The traveling red dress revisited

If you’re a long-term reader of this blog you already know all about the traveling red dress and the magic it brings to those who wear it.  If you’re new, start here and then come back, because it’s about to get fun.

A few weeks ago we picked up the traveling red dress project again as people began offering red dresses to strangers in the hopes that they could pass a little magic into the lives of people who were celebrating a milestone, battling an enemy, or simply in need of a shiny red ball gown to remind them how amazing they were.  People around the world started giving out red dresses and offering to do red dress photo shoots for free.  It was covered by Forbes and the Washington Post.  And it was awesome.  And inspiring.  So inspiring, in fact, that my friend Julia mailed me a beautiful red dress to pass on to anyone who needed it.  She knew that most of us curvier girls find it hard to find beautiful ball gowns so she picked out an XXL with a very adjustable corset.  Today it came and I opened it up at my friend Maile’s photo studio and we decided to christen it.  And so, for one hour I wore the hell out of that red dress.  And it was lovely.

Right now I’m 20 pounds overweight.  I can practically see 40 from here.  My boobs are too big and my hair is too mousey.  My laugh lines grow deeper and worry lines are starting to show.  I feel worse about myself than I have in a decade.  But that dress reminded me of who I was.  And who I’ve become.  It reminded me that I’m not just who I see in the mirror, but also what I’ve overcome.  I’m here.  I’ve fought hard for these laugh lines and I’ve battled to survive the worry lines.  I have scars that tell stories and marks that tell tales.  I have hair that shows I survived the chemo drugs I took for my RA, and I have and soft, cushy, smothering arms like my grandmother.  And that makes me beautiful.

 

I’m still a nervous wreck.  I’m still self-consciously terrified in front of strangers.  I still often feel purposeless and a little bit lost…

But I also feel like me….

And I remember to take a deep breath and realize that’s good enough.

PS. The traveling red dress in these photos is ready for its next owner.  As always, if you get a traveling red dress it’s up to you if you want to share the pictures or your story, but you can do so here if you like.  Your only real responsibility is to enjoy it and then pass it on to the next stranger who needs it ,with instructions to keep it going until the damn thing falls to shreds that even Cinderella’s mice couldn’t fix.  And as a thank you I’ll be sending out five brand new red ball gowns myself next week.  If you want a chance at one just leave a comment about what you’re celebrating, or fighting, or surviving.

PPS. If you’re inspired by these stories and want to donate a red dress or a photo session you can do so on the traveling red dress Facebook page.  There are lots of girls giving dresses and lots of girls needing dresses.  And somewhere in the middle, magic happens.

PPPS. If you want to buy this dress yourself you can get it for under $100 right here.  It comes wrinkled as hell and needs steaming, but it works and the laced corset gives it enough leeway to fit several sizes up or down.  (The XXL should fit a 14 – 20 fairly well.)  Also, this company isn’t paying me for this.  But they totally should be.

PPPPS.  The traveling red dress isn’t always red.  It isn’t even always a dress.  It’s anything you’ve always wanted but denied yourself because you thought it was too silly.  It isn’t.  Joy is always worth it.  Go and find your personal red dress, my friend.

And wear the hell out of it.

950 replies. read them below or add one

  1. Seriously you’re an inspiration. Frame these and put them up.

    You should be on a 300 foot tall skyscraper ad (like a sexy Godzilla, yes). GORGEOUS, truly.

    Pish Posh recently posted Chickpea Feta and Pine-Nut Curry.

  2. I would love to have photos of me that were as beautiful as you look in yours.

  3. YOU are right!

    Joy is always worth it.

    ALWAYS

    Lori recently posted a little splash of gold..

  4. You did wear the hell outta that dress. And looked fabulous doing it!

  5. jenny you are GORGEOUS!! the dress is gorgeous, and from one big-bossomed lady to another … they always look better than we think they do, and they don’t make you look fat … they make you look voluptuous … so enjoy the extra weight that’s accumulated in your chest. it’s like a bonus ;-)

    ann @ my life as prose. recently posted on family, gender roles, work/family choices, and a mess of other things..

  6. you look beautiful

    james (with bi-;polar) recently posted Photo.

  7. Gorgeous. Received one in the mail today for my little girl and told her the story of the traveling red dress. And the girl who gave it to her wrote a sweet note. And my girl said, “You mean I’m not alone.”

    Cindy recently posted The Reedster’s Husband Speaks.

  8. My friend, 31 (!), was just diagnosed with BC. She told me because I am a survivor/warrier. She is scared and doesn’t want anyone to know yet. She is a photographer. I want her to have a photo shoot (with me muddling through to take pix of her) before she has surgery and chemo so she can get in touch with and feel her power. And then I want her to have a photo shoot in the dress after she has lost her hair so she can see the beauty in THAT! A woman bald from chemo in a red dress is an incredibly beautifully strong woman.

    (Emailing you now. ~ Jenny)

    Scarlett recently posted Yay for me!.

  9. You are beautiful. You always have been and you always will be.

    juliejulie recently posted How I met The Bloggess and her real best friend IRL at BlogHer.

  10. You are stunningly gorgeous. Really, really.

    Frankly, you’re just fucking amazing all around and you inspire me to be as furiously happy as I can be.

    Veronica recently posted The state of the uterus: 9 weeks.

  11. You are gorgeous.

    I love your red dress. I love your pictures.

    I love how much you inspire me to find my own red dress. Whatever it may be.

    Thank you <3

  12. 14
    Teri Masello

    I think you look absolutely STUNNING!!!! Thank you for sharing these photos!

  13. DITTO! You are so beautiful!!!!

  14. One day I’ll have the courage to wear a red dress, thanks to you. I can’t wait for that day to come.

  15. You are beautiful inside and out. The picture on the bottom right with the scarf around your head should be in a fashion magazine. Well except for the fact it has all those ghost orbs around it. Seriously, you have lots of people in those pictures with you.

    tamaratattles recently posted Orphan Tourism in South Africa.

  16. Fantastic pictures! I just bought a vintage red dress and I’m going to do a little work on it and fix it up – then I’ll be ready to be part of the red dress brigade!

    Jeans Y recently posted Soap. My Reflection For Valentine's Day.

  17. It’s pretty obvious you’re not just a hottie on the inside…but on the outside, too.

    And I didn’t see 20lbs anywhere.

    Just a big, huge heart.

    Love.

    Carrie recently posted Please don’t think you can be a better me. You can’t. Hell, I can’t..

  18. You. Are. Beautiful. Seeing you makes me cry happy tears.
    Thank you for sharing your life with me, with millions of others who hide in darkness, looking for light.

  19. I wore a red dress for my wedding but it was no where near as beautiful as that one.
    And those first three photos? Amazing.

  20. ok, so i seriously can’t stop scrolling through these photos! :) so so lovely.

    ann @ my life as prose. recently posted on family, gender roles, work/family choices, and a mess of other things..

  21. You. Are. Gorgeous! Incredibly gorgeous! And so is that dress! I would love to participate. I’m a curvier girl as well. Been dealing with tons of stress at home/work lately and would love a pick-me-up. :) Been suffering massive migraines for almost 2 months now and not sure what’s causing them. They’re frustrating and all I want to do is curl up in the darkest room possible!

    Keep shining, Jenny. You’re an amazing woman!

  22. I’m not a long time reader of the blog, but once I found this blog, I power read the hell ouf of this blog. And your adventures remind me of the fun my friend Kelly and I had during college (Especially the Beyonce story).

    I fucking love the red dress. I love that it’s caught on. If I ever do a red dress photo shoot, it would be with my Doberman, who I always put in a red collar (currently studded, but there’s one in the mail with Steampunk cogs on it) and sometimes in a red hoodie, when she’s cold.

    Your pictures are gorgeous.

    Jen recently posted Rawr, a Dinosaur.

  23. This is truly inspiring. And you are simply stunning!

    This is the dress I’d like to wear! I’ll be starting a new job in a week and am so anxious!

    Also, I’m reclaiming my life for my own after a few years of hard-fought depression (a week on meds!), the lowest self-confidence and esteem I’ve experienced…and grief that I’m finally overcoming with the unconditional love and support of my partner…any chance this dress could make it to DC?

  24. You took my breath away, in a good way.

    Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] recently posted Pork Tenderloin Sliders: The Other White Meat In My Belly.

  25. Jenny, you are beautiful! You look awesome in that red. I wish I had your courage to do this but I know I never will. It does my heart good though to see others look so happy in their Traveling Red Dress.

  26. Thank you. I just experienced joy in seeing yours.

    I needed that today.

    Renee recently posted Flavored Friendship.

  27. Playful and sexy. Vulnerability and strength within…

  28. These are amazing picture! I have my dress, and, though it doesn’t quite fit, I’ve figured out how to make it work. I have a photographer. I’m just waiting for a day when we can manage to get together, and then I’ll have my moment. I’ve had a lot of ups and downs in the last couple of years, and things are finally starting to work out. This dress is a celebration. I’ll be sure to share the results :)

    Cassandra Neace (@CassandraNeace) recently posted Book Review: The Baker’s Daughter.

  29. You rocked that dress, girl. As someone who also suffers from anxiety, you’re an inspiration. Thank you for that.

    Carri recently posted This is Me.

  30. You are wonderful. You are you, and no one else could possibly say that (and no way your boobs are too big). You do wonderful things for people you don’t know, and may never know it was you who did them. You are, absolutely, better than Mother Theresa. I have never been prouder to have you as My Internet Wife.™

  31. I have never in my life wanted boobs, but those photos made me want to be bigger than my beloved A-cups. That dress looks fantastic on you! (Although, nothing beats the original Red Dress.)

    Kristin recently posted Glad I Saw It: Best Collection of Stuff – Ever..

  32. My frighteningly low serotonin level is making me cry like a total weenie at the beauty of the traveling red dress. Your generosity and kindness and spirit are like a lifeline :) Thanks for all you do :)

    XLMIC recently posted Vecchio Venerdì... a big family legacy.

  33. I was gonna tell you about my reasons for needing a red dress, but then I read the one about the woman who’s friend has BC. She needs the dress…right fucking now (comment #18). You are awesome!

  34. Well I don’t know but I should be so lucky as to be 20 pounds overweight and facing forty the way you are. Your insides shine out in a blaze of glory – in this blog and in this dress. AND “joy is always worth it” seems like the best life-mantra I’ve ever heard. Thank you for that.

    deborah l quinn recently posted Abu Dhabi Tex-Mex: the secret of Maria’s kitchen.

  35. LOVE. You are an inspiration to me Jenny. I agree that any of those pictures could be in magazines! Your true beauty shines through. I haven’t figured out what my “red dress” is yet, but when I do I hope I can wear it as good as you.

  36. You are uncommonly beautiful. And strong. And brave.

    And can I borrow a dress in mid-March? I’m throwing myself a little 38th & 1/2-birthday slumber party to celebrate that I made it to 2012. And the amazing fact that I didn’t purposefully make 2011 my final year.

    I need to celebrate this life and all it’s challenges with my girlfriends, who I suspect could use a touch of this magic as much as I could.

    xo, Jennifer

    Knighton recently posted Bota Box Cabernet Sauvignon (California 2010).

  37. I’d swear we were separated at birth (right down to the big boobs and mousy hair) if it weren’t for the fact that my wit cannot hold a candle to yours. Turning 37 this year, overweight (again), chronic pain fighter and fellow soldier against depression. Your posts give me such hope that I can be the person who I aspire to be and be the role model my daughter deserves. Thank you so much. We are trying to manage on 1 salary here so I can stay home with our daughter, so in lieu of a donation I can only re-post and re-tweet.

    Michelle recently posted Pep Boys: Does Nothing While You Sit There for Hours (UPDATED) (UPDATED AGAIN).

  38. Weird, I thought I just wrote this, but here goes again: I wish I could rock 20 extra pounds and pushing forty as well as you do – your beautiful insides meet your beautiful outsides in those photos. Fabulous. AND “joy is always worth it” seems like just about the best life-mantra I’ve ever heard. So thank you for that.

    deborah l quinn recently posted Abu Dhabi Tex-Mex: the secret of Maria’s kitchen.

  39. Thank you, Jenny. Thank you for your spirit, for your strength, for your vulnerability, and for your willingness to share it all with the world. I needed to see this tonight. I needed to read this and know that the worry lines can be survived. I’m not quite ready to share it all, but I can say with absolute certainty that I am so grateful you already are. Rock that dress.

  40. All I can do is give you the applause and lauds you deserve for being you. You’ve got it, Jenny!

  41. I think maybe it is time to swallow my pride. 3 hip replacements in the last 6 months (JRA, the gift that keeps on giving!). A nervous breakdown (I feel like that sounds very dramatic, but it turns out that panic attacks that last days? Probably not average…) and the completion of a PhD (followed by a cross country move to austin) just a few months before that. But you know what? I AM BACK. Ok, still on crutches, but coming out fighting. But maybe for a minute not fighting *myself*…

  42. You. Look. Magical.

    I don’t need a red dress right now, but just want to thank you for your inspiration for women all over the world to celebrate themselves. We give ourselves such a hard time, all the time and so often with little to no support and encouragement. We are taught that we are nothing without the right job/husband/kids/house. And yet we should be taught that we are special. Unique. Amazing. Just for being. For surviving. For achieving. Just because. Thank you for making that happen.

  43. Holy shit, you’re gorgeous! Seriously, you have beautiful eyes, and the loveliest smile, and your curves are stunning. Thank you so much for sharing your pictures. :D

  44. Wonderful, beautiful photos! And yes….I agree with previous commenter. Commenter Scarlett’s friend needs that dress.

  45. Your boobs are NOT too big. You are BEAUTIFUL. (I want that dress in the emerald green… but it would remain a red dress in spirit!)

  46. Well done, JL! Proud of you for exposing the real you!

    Delfin Joaquin Paris III recently posted Sitting with Hard Feelings is Exhausting.

  47. In theses photos, I see a beautiful, strong woman ROCKING that dress. I don’t see any amount of “overweight.” You look amazing and gorgeous.

  48. Beautiful. Absolutely beautiful! I so needed this today.

    Janae recently posted Looking in the Mirror.

  49. I would love to wear a red dress. I’m getting ready to have a bilateral mastectomy because I have breast cancer and I’m BRCA2 positive, which means that I could save one breast but that I’d probably get cancer in it anyway. Since I’m BRCA2 positive, I’m also getting my ovaries out, but I’m not emotionally attached to them the way I am my boobs. But I like to think that I can give up my boobs if it means that I can live a little longer, enjoying time with my husband and two dogs. And laugh lines? Don’t get me started! Just turned 41 three weeks ago, and let me tell you, the wrinkles show up a lot worse when the camouflage of your hair has gone! :)

    BTW, this red dress is beautiful. Just like you.

    Beezus recently posted How We Cope.

  50. Stunning and Breathtakingly Gorgeous!!! It’s so nice to read of a woman that embraces who she is and see her revel in The Red Dress!
    “You look mahvelouss dahling” B. Crystal
    Kat

  51. You look lovely in the best, cheeky kind of way. What a great project.

    Stasha recently posted Scavenger hunt.

  52. You are effing gorgeous, and I will smack you if you say otherwise. (Lovingly, though.) I discovered your blog fairly recently, and it has seriously cheered me up, especially in the last few weeks. I’ve been depressed and haven’t really admitted to anyone yet, but every post of yours makes me feel more encouraged to keep pushing forward. (And, admittedly, I squealed a little when you followed me back on twitter.) Seriously, thank you for being you. If I was anywhere near you, I’d take you out for a shitload of drinks.

  53. Oh Jenny, you lovely lovely, gorgeous woman.You are beautiful you know. You shine with it. I have been reading your blog since 2007 and I admire you tremendously. I will be 46 next week and the one thing I have learnt, once I got over the shock of being 40, and remembering when my Mum turned 40. That being in your 40s is wonderful. I went through a stage where I felt invisible and old and fat but mostly invisible and I read a quote somewhere from a woman much like myself who said you can achieve great things when you are invisible. I decided to own that quote. I also decided that I wasn’t really ready to be invisible either. Plus it is a bit hard to be invisible when you have purple hair lol. Love from Australia, gorgeous. xx

    frogpondsrock recently posted Sunday Selections #55.

  54. You are such a beautiful woman. And what’s even better is that you’re sharing beauty and spreading it in your wake.

    Misha recently posted Use it up..

  55. 59
    Sleepy_Carol

    This is wonderful!!! I would love the dress, but I’m a little smaller than this dress can handle. My friends and I are just getting over the recent death of another friend. She was too young to leave us and we are all in the need of a pick me up. I’ll have to look for something on the traveling dress page for a 8-12 ish dress.

  56. You are one beautiful, buxom, ballsy and bodacious broad! Love this idea and can’t wait to see how I can participate in helping myself and others to find the perfect Red Dress.

  57. You look stunning in those shots! Hopefully someday I’ll get a chance to wear a beautiful red gown myself and look as good as you did.

  58. I’m a mom. After my second was born I decided to give up my career of 11 years to stay home. I feel like I’m going through identity theft. I’m battling depression as I struggle to redefine me. I’m a 10-12 and I would love the chance to wear a red dress. Maybe I’d feel beautiful or sexy or happy again.

  59. I just love you! You’re fabulous and you look beautiful. But more important is that, yes, you ARE here and we’re all better off (and laughing more) because of it. Thanks!

    RK recently posted You're just jealous because in the last two minutes I've matured and you haven't..

  60. You are STUNNING. I have shared your blog with my daughter & son-in-law, and they both love you as well. I also pre-ordered your book for my daughter and I both, because you’re just that awesome.

    I would love a red dress – I’m unemployed at 50, so fighting the job market & obsession with youth, but also loving the first break I’ve had since ’95. It all happens for a reason.

    Tug recently posted Another View of George.

  61. You’re beautiful, Ms Blogess.

  62. I’m currently battening anxiety at 17, and it sucks. It really sucks, but knowing that there is someone out there who can also say that it sucks, makes me feel so much better about my whole situation. Writing this post just reminded me I need to take my meds….this blog is so incredibly helpful in so many ways.

  63. I love that dress!

    Courtney recently posted Photo.

  64. My God, Jenny, you look BEAUTIFUL. You’re spirit keeps me going. Thank you.

  65. The pics and the dress are beautiful, just like the whole idea is. And you are. Congrats on this, for all the inspiration it is spreading. And I don’t see the 20 lbs on you. Or on me. Attitude is everything….

    alfred lives here recently posted Brad Pitt's Gay Marriage Pledge.....

  66. Your smile gives many of us an extra breath today. Or tonight. It’s late & I’m tired. You know what I mean.

    I see these pictures of you and can’t help but wish that everyone who comes here for more than just a laugh, who have weights in them or on them and come here for camaraderie and hope and light, every single one of us, could have a photo session in a red dress.

    I may have to do one myself.

    Kim at Let Me Start By Saying recently posted A Familiar Glance.

  67. These words…

    “Right now I’m 20 pounds overweight. I can practically see 40 from here. My boobs are too big and my hair is too mousey. ”

    …are a crime you commit against yourself. We’re all 20 pounds overweight, I can see 40 about 6 months away for me, and I’m a guy and even *my* boobs are too big. ;)

    What we see and what you see could be reconciled. And we outnumber you, and in this case majority rules. Find your beauty in your everyday.

  68. if that’s 20 pounds overweight i say keep it on because you look abso-freaking-lutely amazing!

    you look happy, divine and comfortable in who you are and what you look like and that just rocks!

    ~x~

  69. Jenny, what magnificent photos! You are so beautiful! I’m partial to red dresses — ball gowns in particular — and think that ever woman should harbor a red dress or five. You never know when you might need one. ; )

    Colleen recently posted The Chinese and the Mayans.

  70. you are stunning in those pics, your boobs are fabulous! I love your blog, you inspire many! keep it going! xo

    Tracey recently posted It looks like Christmas around here!.

  71. OMG…you look stunning!

  72. YOU. ARE. AMAZING.
    I don’t need the dress, I just came here to say that.
    I love you.

  73. you are such a beautiful person, outside and in. you share your stories about your struggles and you let us know that we aren’t alone. you are so open and honest and REAL. and it is a truly beautiful thing. i read your blog religiously because not only does it make me laugh until i cry at times, but it makes me feel like there is hope for me and all of the women like me, who have struggled with depression or self harm or issues like eating disorders or bipolar disorder or serious illness. i haven’t felt attractive or comfortable in my skin for a long time, at least since i was 16 (14 years ago) and began my own path of bulimia and depression and self injury. sometimes i worry that i will never be able to look at myself and say “she’s okay, and i love her scars and all.” but then i read your blog and see your pictures and i cry because it means so much to see someone like me who is learning (has learned) to accept themselves and love themselves “as is.” so thank you for your stories and your amazing traveling red dress project and for reaching out and giving all of us these amazing written “hugs” and letting us know that, no matter what, we are not alone.

  74. You are beautiful. Don’t let anyone say otherwise. I’m about 50 lbs overweird *that was supposed to be overweight…but I like overweird better* because of meds too, and stress. I would LOVE a red dress like that. But laugh lines…they are beautiful. I would never get rid of them for anything! Stay strong and beautiful.

    Lesley recently posted Fairy Tales: I Don't Care What You Say.

  75. Fits a 14-20? That alone is magic!

    You look amazing. Stunning. Powerful in your femininity. The dress doesn’t have the power, does it? We do.

    Susan recently posted Alive and well and smiling.

  76. You are beautiful both inside and out.

    Sometimes it seems like we’ve been fighting and surviving life in general. Except for my weight, my health is pretty good but, in the past 8 yrs, it seems the medical gods have been against us. We’ve dealt with repeat pregnancy loss (6 losses while trying to conceive our youngest), emergency surgery for my husband because of a MRSA infection that was threatening his life, a diabetes diagnosis for my husband that rapidly progress from type 2 to insulin dependence, short term temporary paralysis for my oldest from severe muscle spasms, the death of my father in law due to medical incompetence, and an extremely rare reaction to allergy medicine for my oldest. Obviously, I did something to piss off the medical god’s in a prior life.

    I don’t know if any of your red dresses would fit me. I have a 54 inch bust. But, if one did, I’d LOVE to have a chance to do a photo shoot and maybe wear it to my son’s ROTC military ball next month.

  77. Why hasn’t anyone nominated you for an appearance on NBC Nightly News’ Making a Difference segment? I tried but the link was bad.

    Jim Murrey recently posted Folktales, mythology and folklore..

  78. Beautiful – that’s what you are – inside and out.

  79. Every single red dress post has made me weep…. not sadness, but sheer, overwhelming joy.

    It completely stuns and amazes me that you don’t see how magnificently gorgeous you are.

    I used to have the most amazing purple satin covered in black chiffon dress that I loved, alas, it got left behind when I fled my old life and then lost forever a couple of years ago. It was the only piece of clothing I’ve ever had made for me and I miss it so much some days. Moreso because I hate being photographed and there are no pictures of me in the dress.

    I hope at some point I can find a red dress and that I will have the good sense to get over myself and get pictures taken when I have it.

    MsDarkstar recently posted Fantasy Becomes Reality.

  80. You are gorgeous. That dress is gorgeous. This post is gorgeous. If I had those boobs my husband would hate me. Sheer shirts and strangers motorboating. Anyway, I tried to talk recently about my shit but…I can’t fully yet.

    I need a dress. I want a dress. Even if it’s just for an hour. I’m in DC. And I’m a size 2. Yes, I eat!

    Arnebya recently posted How’s That Parenting Working Out for Ya?.

  81. Jenny, you are gorgeous. And you look absolutely stunning in that dress.

  82. I don’t see extra pounds or lines. I only see someone that is beautiful.

  83. Jenny, you are stunning! I also love your humor and quirky tastes. If you weren’t attached and I weren’t attached I’d totally hit on you all the time. Totally!

  84. I love you, Jenny. (But not in a creepy stalker kind of way. Yet.)

    Brenna recently posted I love photobombs.

  85. I’ve been reading your blog for ages now and want to ask for help in something like a red dress. My depression and anxiety has been making me feel ugly and horrible and anything to make me feel worthwhile would help. My email address should be registered woth my comment though I understand if you dont have time to respond to each email.

  86. Y’know, I’m half-way tempted to get a red 3-piece suit, complete with shoes and fedora and get my picture taken in it. ‘Course, I did just take some Nyquil, so it’s probably not a good time for me to be making any major fashion purchases…

    Steve D recently posted #342 Movie Night.

  87. The funny thing is that of all of the photos in this post, the best ones are the close-ups of you. It’s not the dress making you awesome, you’re doing that all by yourself. High fives!

  88. In case you were wondering, Collage 2, the square pic in the upper right side with the scarf behind you and the side glance? That’s the money shot.

    My mother always taught me to always pick clothes like this: “You should wear the dress. The dress should never wear you.” I think these dresses are like that. The women who get these dresses are wearing THEM. And I like every part of that. xo

  89. Beautiful! You…and this project.

    If anyone in NE OH or NW PA needs red dress photos (free), please email me. I would be honored to capture your red dress images for you.

  90. Girl, you make me cry. You look better than I do, and I’m only 29! And I haven’t had chemo!! Anyway, I haven’t found my red dress yet. To be honest, I hate dresses, and maybe that’s my problem. Maybe I’ll try on a hundred metaphorical dresses before I find THE ONE where I can sit down and take photos like the ones you have here and really feel beautiful. Maybe I just need to go make myself put on a dress that I think I’ll hate, just to see how it feels. I dunno. But thanks for making me think about it. You ARE beautiful. And I hope someone gorgeous gets that dress. They deserve it.

    Sarah B. recently posted Typing Games.

  91. I cried. In a good way. You look so confident and excited. That’s what the red dress should do to you.

    Brendazzle* recently posted my idea of paradise.

  92. you are beautiful inside and out!

  93. Such an awesome idea!
    And you’re gorgeous.
    And I want your rack.
    Creepy?

    Allyn recently posted Foodie Friday: Chicken Manchego.

  94. Gods i am NOT meaning to repost..-hits her computer-

    Lori recently posted a little splash of gold..

  95. 99
    Charlotte Anne

    Would love one or two! My sister and I are extremely close and our dear Mama passed away on New Years Day of this year. To say it has been hard is an understatement and her passing has brought back the depression and anxiety I thought I had overcome years earlier. We are both curvy girls so two of these adjustable dresses would be amazing and having a sister photo shoot may allow us the feel the joy entering back into our lives. Regardless we love you and your honesty and You are truly a hero and role model!

  96. You look HAWT. Boobs can almost never be too big…they’re the upside of gaining lots of wait and being heavier than one wants to be. BEWBS.

    Barilla recently posted Messy Mani with a Message.

  97. You are beautiful and inspiring in both body and soul. Never let anyone tell you otherwise, not even yourself. Thank you so much for sharing with us.

  98. I would love to have a red dress to share with my mother, who refuses to buy herself anything other than secondhand clothes and only has one bra she never wears. She doesn’t think she’s worth it (recovering from alcoholism), and I am trying to help her see otherwise. I also constantly feel inadequate and often identify with you and your struggles. You are an amazing writer and human being. Sometimes when everything just seems like too much and like I will never be good enough at anything, I read a post and just laugh my head off. Your humor has saved me. I am a recent nerwcomer won over by the gigantic chicken and Victor’s response. I think he is cut from the same cloth as my husband.

  99. I am celebrating the two beautiful children I almost couldn’t have. They’re my oxygen; my reasons for everything.
    I am fighting for my three-month-old son. After a traumatic birth and difficult start in this world, he struggles everyday for peace and comfort. It is utterly draining. It leaves me [sometimes] too exhausted to play with my five-year-old. It makes me crazy. It makes me want to curl up into a ball. And then he smiles. And I remember why I can’t.
    I am surviving the past. The scars, inside and out. The fear of disappearing, not being remembered. I am simply surviving everything that is destructible…everything that is me.

    I forget what it feels like to feel beautiful, but I see it in you, even if you don’t.

    You inspire me.
    <3

    Candyland recently posted And then, this happened....

  100. I have a long, insightfuldulgent comment to make, but a) you are beautiful and purposeful and you make this world a better place and b) boobies are always perfect, even the ones that are no longer there, because the woman is.

  101. I am a longtime reader/lurker and I love, love, love you in this dress. I loved the original one even more. This damn story brings tears to my eyes every single time you update it.

    I’m totally going to pimp myself out for a red dress. I spent most of my 20’s taking care of my husband and his dad and grandfather (both of whom passed away in 2008) and trying to build a family. After ten years TTC, 3 IVF’s and 3 miscarriages, my soul has taken quite a beating. I’ve gained close to 50 pounds because I’ve been so focused on taking care of other people that I’ve forgotten how to take care of myself. Now, as the husband and I close the door on our dreams for biological children and prepare to make the leap for adoption, I’m trying hard to become the kind of woman my future daughter can admire. I’m learning how to run (literally!) and learning how to say “no.” The hardest thing, though, has been learning how to say “yes” to the things that make me feel good. I deserve good things — I know that in my head. It’s just so damn hard to put it into practice.

    Red dress or not — you are one brave, funny, amazing woman and I hope one day that I can say the same thing when I look into the mirror.

  102. you awesome trend setter, you (I know, I know, the word “awesome” is tired. But I don’t care. It suits you).

  103. 107
    Fighting and Surviving AND Celebrating

    What I’m fighting: A medical system who after a decade has still not figured out what’s wrong.
    What I’m surviving: Headaches, migraines, ovaries that want to kill me, dizziness, nauseousness, too much to list..
    What I’m celebrating: That even after all this I’m still able to work and occasionally play and spend time with my husband who loves and supports me daily.

    #travellingreddress FTW!

  104. This made my day. You are beautiful, inside and out.

    Heather recently posted Book Review: Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison.

  105. Absolutely amazing. I decided I need to find out my friends red dress is and get it for her. She is struggling more than I can even imagine right now. She found out in september date her husband have been molesting her stepdaughter and my niece. He’s in jail now and she is left with aa 4 year old boyis who misses his daddy and can’t ever see him again. She’s angry and hurt but mostly her heart is breaking for her son.Her sonson is my son’s best friend and I hurt just as much as I possibly can for her. I struggle with BPD and right now I’m not winning my fight, but I have the joy of knowing that my husband is here to support me and love our kids. I now know that I need to bring magic to my friends life and that, in turn will give me joy, and hope to keep going.

    Breanna recently posted Bloody Babies.

  106. 110
    Kathryn Franks

    You look AMAZING!!! I always say that personality improves looks, you can look like a super model, but if you can’t hang with me, you are not good looking. In every picture I have seen of you, you are GORGEOUS!! 20# overweight be damn!! I struggle every damn day with weight issues, but I know, no matter what my personality shines through…as does yours!!
    The #travellingreddress project is a way for all of us to remember this!!
    Thrush

  107. Jenny, you are beautiful. Every curvy inch of you, and let me tell you sister, what I wouldn’t give to look like that. We all have our shit to deal with, but you deal with yours so publicly (as opposed to pubicly, which isn’t a word but should be) and bravely and I hope at least occasionally you stop and realize how amazing you are to so many people. And boy, do you know how to wear a red dress.

  108. Holy Boobs Batman!
    Seriously, from one top heavy girl to another . . . you look beyond amazing. Like I really don’t want to show this post to my husband cause I know he’ll say something inappropriate (but oddly complimentary to you).

    Gawd, Jenny you are so gorgeous. And the best thing in the world is you make awkward beautiful. Which is really great for us awkward girls. You are a role model for the strange and beautiful.

    Untypically Jia recently posted Untypically in Love: Jackpot.

  109. I have recently found your blog. It makes me laugh and sometimes cry. My wish is for all of the women out there like me…not anywhere near perfect, learn to embrace that what they think are defects are really only make them more beautiful. Your pictures are amazing! I just realized that I haven’t worn a gown in 28 years, my senior prom. Wow!

  110. I’ve debated on posting every time this topic comes up, and I think I’m going to post, and if it happens it happens, if not, that’s okay too.

    I’ve struggled with anxiety and depression for years. All I’ve ever wanted in life was to be a good wife, and a GREAT mother. I finally got the wife part, and I’m so grateful for my amazing husband… but he and I have been struggling with my infertility issues for 4 years now. I’ve gained more and more weight every year as the depression gets worse, and the tests get more invasive, and scary. The next one decides if I need surgery or not, and even the thought of that terrifies me.

    Every day I struggle with the fact that I may not ever get what I’ve always wanted, and with the fact that I feel less and less like a woman every time I think again that it’s not going to happen, and more and more like I’m letting my husband down on top of it all. I am really struggling with trying not to hate my body that is defying me, and denying me the only real thing that I ever wanted to do with my life, and my heart. I feel broken…

    I don’t know if this would help or not, maybe it wouldn’t make any difference in how I see myself or my body… but maybe it would. I think I need a day… an hour… maybe even just a moment, of feeling like I am beautiful as a whole person. That my body is okay just as it is… and that life goes on, and there is still joy to be found. Even if it just helps me distract my mind for a little bit… it’s worth trying.

  111. I’m 50(?) lbs heavier than I should be, my hair has a fine peppering of grey, I rarely wear makeup but I need to celebrate being exactly who I am because I’m also fighting cancer, strengthening myself after brain surgery and recovering from 7wks intensive radiation. I am enough. I am worthy. I am here. Joy.

  112. I love this. I love your photos. And I love the Red Dress, and the fact that it doesn’t even have to be red or a dress. I have a red dress. It’s not red, and it’s not a dress. It’s my blog. And I have to fight my family every single day for that hour when I sit down and write, because they want my attention or my time or my help, but I NEED this. It gives me joy. I don’t care if I never sell a single book or article, or if I never go past a few “follows”. I LIKE doing it, and I feel good about it, and I feel like I’m doing something that I’m decent at, and it makes me feel accomplished.

    We all need our red dresses, no matter what they are. Thanks for reminding me. I WILL remember who I am. It will give me strength when I take my hour to write again tomorrow, and everyone starts complaining that I’m “on the computer again”, and that I need to STOP NOW and do this or that or the other for them. And I will tell them, “This is my hour to be me.”

    Karina Chapman recently posted Organizing for the Busy Person.

  113. You.are.awesome.
    Traveling.red.dresses.are.awesome.
    Inspiring.

  114. Oh how I need some magic! In the past decade, I’ve been divorced, dated, remarried, become a stepmother and a mother in law (at 36!!), moved away from my family, moved from the city to the country, been in *2* car wrecks where I was rear-ended and came away with “only” fibromyalgia, a bulging disc in my neck and chronic sleep problems, and had my dad die 11 days after he learned he had cancer. I’ve been passed over THREE TIMES for promotions that I SO could have done fabulous stuff at. I’ve had all kinds of health problems that turned out to be hypothyroidism, fibroid tumors, polycystic ovarian syndrome AND endometriosis (lucky me!)…now that I’m on thyroid meds and have had a full hysterectomy, I’m on the upswing….I am turning 44 in 2 weeks and am DONE with being held back by my body! I may not be as strong, flexible or as thin as I was in my past, but I am HERE. And as a 18-20-sized person, the “adjustable XXL” red dress would be just the ticket.

    Sheila recently posted Riding Season Has Started!.

  115. PS antipsychotics would be so much better if they didn’t cause weight gain. I’m up almost 40 pounds since I started them in July.

    Breanna recently posted Bloody Babies.

  116. I cannot tell you how many people I’ve told about this. I have yet to find my own red dress but I’m always on the hunt. And for the record, I’m insanely jealous of your boobs. Seriously. You look gorgeous.

    Jen C recently posted The Before PIctures.

  117. great pictures! YOU look amazing!
    Your post made tears come to my eyes. I’ve been going to college for the last 2 years and graduate in May. It’s so empowering to finally achieve something like this at 42 years old. Right before my 40th I decided to go back to college and do something for ME! I’m doing it! I plan to continue on and get my bachelor’s degree next….may even go for my masters!

  118. 122
    Mary (AKA Cat in The Hat)

    You are not only a great Mother, Friend, Blogger, Inspiration to many, but you could also be a model. Those photos were beautiful.

  119. Red leaves no room for anything other than bravery. It’s just awesome like that.

    Leta recently posted Cordate.

  120. This is very cool. You look beautiful, really, really lovely.

    Roxanne/tinkerbell the bipolar faerie recently posted Between The Stars.

  121. I didnt think I wanted to try this red dress thing. I thought I wasn’t special enough, hadn’t survived enough, wasn’t worthy enough to do this. But I’ve survived cancer. I have survived losin my whole family because of some pretty petty stuff my own parents pulled. I’ve survived moving to a town where I know no one while 6 months pregnant and on bed rest.

    I’ve survived bullying, sexual assault, obesity and teen pregnancy and by god, I would LOVE to wear the hell out of a red dress.

    Mia recently posted Mamavation Finalist: Andrea Emilien.

  122. I am going to buy that dress SO HARD. It’s in my wish list and it will be mine after a couple of bills have been paid. I have already named it “Guns.” When Guns comes home, we are going to go out on a quest to find myself some of that elusive self-esteem that I’ve been missing.

    That’s why I need Guns. I always feel worthless even though I should know better by now.

    Wow. I can’t believe I actually typed that in front of everybody. I didn’t plan on going beyond the sentence about the quest. I guess I needed to get that off of my chest after forty years of holding it in. It was a lot harder than I thought it would be. Now I just need to pull it together, stop crying and get back to the positive part.

    Guns will remind me that I am not worthless. I am awesome and deserve a kick-ass red dress named Guns.

    SKellyHart recently posted Them Not So Crooked Vultures.

  123. I sit here on the eve of my 41st birthday, thinking that I have never felt more together in my entire life. I grew up with undiagnosed PCOS, hypothyroidism, a severe anxiety disorder, a MTHFR mutation, and a rather crappy home life. I’m now battling PTSD every day from something that happened 4 years ago which no one should ever have to experience. I have just moved back to the US after 12 years overseas and feel incredibly lost most days, but I have come through it all not pounded down but chiseled to my essence. And I’m finding my essence is bloody strong. My strengths outnumber all the things I should not be able to do.

    So I hear the Red Dress. I may never wear it, but I hear its power.

    Thank you for this.

  124. You are gorgeous and inspirational, Jenny — inside and out.

  125. I absolutely love this. LOVE LOVE LOVE. I’ve always wanted a red dress, but have never gotten one, because dresses tend to always make me look fat, and I’m very self-conscious about my weight. Every time you’ve mentioned the traveling red dress on here or on Twitter, I always get a lump in my throat and heart, and want to ask you if I could be sent one. But I feel like I haven’t been through as much as so many of your other readers have been through, and who am I to ask for a gorgeously beautiful red dress to cheer me up? But today I’m going to ask, because getting to wear that stunning dress might just be exactly what I need.

    I lost my job at the end of August due to restructuring, budget cuts, yadda yadda. Unemployment has sucked. I haven’t had an interview since November, and I’m DESPERATE for a job. I want to work so badly, and I’m very discouraged with how stagnant the job search has been lately. I got a severance package, but my money’s pretty much gone now, so I’m very stressed out. Having this dress would make me feel like a million bucks and maybe just give me a confidence boost and brighten my life a little bit. I’m in the size 14-20 range, so that dress would fit me well.

    I love your blog so much. Thanks for all you share.

  126. Okay, I know this is going to make me sound like a stalker… but I kind of want to move in next door to you and be your best friend and do everything together. Seriously.

    Not just because you’re hilarious, but because you’re brave, and you’re fierce, and you make my heart feel full of pride and hope on a weekly basis. You’re making the world better, and you’re helping people who have the struggles that we have (the secret ones, the ones that you hope the neighbors and the kids teachers don’t hear about because you just KNOW they won’t understand) feel less alone and less ashamed.

    You rock my mismatched socks, lady.

    DesertBell recently posted The (Fake) Story Behind The Song: “What’s My Name”.

  127. I think my red dress is my bike. I’ve been reading since before the first red dress post, and have spread the word about the project in case a friend of a friend needs it, and IT JUST NOW HIT ME that my wonderful bakfiets is my red dress. I feel so happy on it. Who wouldn’t feel happy with a 90-pound bike that you can fit both kids (another 90 pounds) and the groceries in (not on, in)? Thanks for reminding me that it didn’t have to be a dress. Love you, Jenny!

  128. I’m way jealous of your boobs. Never say they’re too big!

    I know that my need for a red dress is probably (actually, almost certainly) less than others, but I’d like to celebrate stepping towards adulthood! My husband and I are buying our first house and are moving in on Tuesday. On top of that, we just got back from the hospital for emergency appendectomy for my husband. This was a whirlwind day – 12 hours from symptom start to surgery done and us home! So he’s on the mend and just has to watch the rest of us move everything (he can’t lift more than 10/15 lbs plus he’s going to hurt like the dickens for at least the next week). We’re going to be taking on some home improvement projects for which we have absolutely zero experience.

    So basically I’m super excited for this chapter of our life, but also super apprehensive about all the responsibilities we’re taking on. I’d love a confidence reminder and an opportunity to selfishly focus on myself for at least 1 day :)

  129. so beautiful! I am celebrating going back to school after 11 years off, AND making the Dean’s List…I am celebrating the almost 3 years off of chemo treatment for my 9 year old Daughter with Down Syndrome, who is in remission for Leukemia. She is a warrior and a survivor, and because of her…so am I. I would love to wear the dress.

  130. My sexy red dress is really disguised as a pin-up photo shoot. I’ve always been to scared to do it, and it’s pretty expensive. But I’m going to do it now. I may never look better than I do now, and I really want something to remember this part of my life by.

    You are an inspiration and I love your blog.

  131. You are beautiful. <3

    And that is a beautiful dress. I hope it goes to someone who really needs it (and I know it will!)

    Katy recently posted December 22nd: Let it Snow.

  132. You’re beautiful and awesome!

  133. You are a hell of an amazing woman. Period.

    Dipannita recently posted One smile of yours....

  134. Funny….I just posted about “my red dress” here
    http://butterflyquilting.blogspot.com/2012/01/my-red-dress.html
    ….I bought myself Pointe Shoes! Totally fun and nonsense!

  135. Stop dwelling on the negative. Your legs are hot as fuck. They aren’t even legs – they’re GAMS, that’s how hot they are.

  136. Oh dear God, those pictures are GORGEOUS!

  137. I would love a chance at the dress. I go abouty life not wanting to be noticed but I do. I’m amazed by you & what you do.

  138. Funny…I just posted about my “red dress” here…
    http://butterflyquilting.blogspot.com/
    I bought myself pointe shoes!! totally fun and nonsense!!

    Flo@Butterfly Quilting recently posted My Red Dress.

  139. 143
    Emily Fleisher

    You’re really pretty. And I’m not just saying that. You’re actually really pretty. And I’d give my left arm for some of those boobs! Wear the hell outta them, too :)

  140. My god! You are beautiful in these pictures! I met you in the bathroom at BlogHer 09 in Chicago so I know what you look like in real life and the red dress just absolutely brings out the best in you!! When I read your post, the one that recently got so much attention, I forwarded it to my husband and said, “Please read this. Because it says so much about me that I could never put into words.” he, in turn, started reading about depression and how he could help me and our marriage has never been better. I am a good 40 lbs overweight right now, so I can’t imagine being photographed in anything, let alone a gorgeous red gown, but it makes me happier than I ever imagined a stranger could make me to see you looking so radiant. Much love to you Jenny. Please know that I, and so many others, are so much better off because of you. Xoxo

  141. I just want to say that, if I could ever look as amazing as you do in that red dress then I would die happy (I might kill myself on the spot to end on a high note .. but still! happy!). I am short and round and in desparate need of a red dress. I have a beautiful one hanging in my closet just waiting for the day that the zipper goes all the way up and I feel like I’ve earned it. When that day happens, I will likely wear it to Denny’s (because there aren’t any fancy things going on around here … but if I’ve earned it!).

    Anyway, thank you for the inspiration. I love you, I love your red dress project, and I love the idea that some day I would want to put pictures on my own blog of me in a beautiful red dress.

    radioactivegan recently posted I've topped Everest..

  142. I want to get myself the blue one of that dress. Wow. that blue is incredible! (I wore a red dress with a black oriental print for my engagement party, and it rocked. The memories!)
    And you look HAWT.

    Basketcase recently posted The 365 Challenge.

  143. I have struggled with depression all my life. This last bout has been with me for 8 years and has been the worst ever. I am able to hide it from the world – my coworkers, my friends, even most of my family. I can’t talk about it yet because it would be admitting failure. I have recently discovered that the one person I can’t hide this from is my daughter. I was having a down day earlier this week and she said to me, “it’s ok, Mommy. Daddy will take care of us. I know you just can’t handle being our mommy today.” Broke my heart into a million pieces, but made me realize I don’t want to be that person. 7 is too young to have to deal with Mommy’s issues. I have always loved the color red. I would wear it to show my daughter that I always want to be her mommy and that I am not going to let this depression – this disease – determine who I am or what I am worth.

  144. I’d love to get my hands on a red dress.. Not for me but for my friend. She’s had a rough time recently and wants to have a red dress party soon. I’d love to be able to get an “original Bloggess” red dress for her to wear before passing it on.

  145. Gorgeous. And so chic. I want to be like you when I grow up.

    Desiree recently posted 5 ways to help your child learn to love reading.

  146. In the past 24 hours I have tried to sell sex toys at a party where I simply was the entertainment, had a friend die of cancer and hosted my 8 year old’s birthday party. I am feeling quite used up and exhausted. I don’t know if that it enough to warrant a red dress in my life briefly, but I’d love to sport one, even if only for a day or two.

    Those pics of you are beautiful. A very good reflection of your soul. :)

  147. And you have the most beautiful mouth. And I personally love your boobs–tho not in a pervy kind of way. And you’re the funniest thing I’ve found on the internets. So tell the negatives to go fuck themselves, cause you’re way too good for them anyway.

  148. You look how i wish i feel. You look comfortable in your own skin. You have challenged the world and are your own Champion.

    I dont know what would bring me joy right now. Maybe a year from now, when my new baby is born, and my husband is home safe from a war zone. I just need to get through this year. With my family intact.

  149. Madam, you may take this from a woman loving woman, you are dreamy, sexy, and sure-fire fantasy material. And believe me, I look at a lot of women, so I know what I am talking about. Not like through their windows or anything. I don’t care what that restraining order says, I was never in that yard.

  150. You go girlie.

    Be bold and be strong!

  151. My teenaged son just walked past the computer with your picture on the screen and then asked me ‘who the hot chick was.’ To which I replied, “YOU MEAN WHO IS THE BEAUTIFUL LADY??” and then I told him you were my friend.

    And then he replied I need to start bringing my beautiful lady friends home.

    Horny pervert child of mine.

    Love the red dress. Love you. Would love a chance to wear the red dress. You know, celebrate surviving death, disabilities and depression. The usual. Dead kids and all.

    xo

    Redneck Mommy recently posted Tsarina T.

  152. Jenny, you are a beautiful woman, inside and out, dress or no dress. My tax refund will be here soon, and I think I’m going to spend just a touch of it on a lovely red dress to share.

  153. All of the stories here sound so much like my own; I can relate to so many of you awesome women!

    Here’s a little bit about my story. In 2 years, I’ve lost two jobs. This, needless to say, does not help in the anxiety and depression departments. Last year, my husband was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer (thanks to God, he’s okay!) but he also has a genetic mutation, so he will never truly be cured. I pretty much gave up me with his diagnosis in order to take care of him and advocate for him. I’ve become involved with the national patient organization for his condition and am now writing for their newsletter, and hopefully helping others that are in our position. I also decided to go back to school to pursue my dream of being a nurse. All while raising out three kids. Although I’m proud of the work I’m doing, and my 4.0, I’m not sure that I’ll ever find myself, no matter how hard I try. The red dress is worth a shot to boost that self esteem, and I’d love to give it a go!

  154. You are the epitome of beauty – inside and out.

  155. Wowwwiiei you look absolutely beautiful!
    If I would have pictures like you, I would not be shy to blog about them… too bad I have extreme underweight (genetics) so there is more chance that dogs will talk some day then that I would ever be able to have pictures like that… but! If I would join this project, I think it would be a huge boost for my self-confidence.
    I don’t believe they have XS size though.

    Oh and red totally fits you.

    Lindsay Drya recently posted A Square of Gratitude.

  156. 160
    Someone you know

    Today is January 28th and right now I am not sure if I’ll make it to the 29th. People online and in real life tell me how smart I am and that after losing the one thing I held dear and was passionate about – my job – I feel like I have nowhere to go.

    I feel as though the confidence of others should buoy me and I shouldn’t feel so heartbroken about the direction my life is taking. But I don’t. I want to feel like me again and see myself the way others do.

    (I know you. You are amazing. Your mind is lying to you. Listen to me. Don’t give up. ~ Jenny)

  157. My red dress was giving up a job that I held for eight years, that I hated, that was killing me. It’s been really inspiring watching all the red dress stories and realizing “Wait, people actually ENJOY things?” And now, lots and lots of people are! This is really great.

    Also, in the nicest sweetest possible way . . . nice rack!

    d-day recently posted The Married Ladies' Guide to Buying a Desk in 25 Steps.

  158. Your smile is amazing.

  159. Wow. I’m not one to jump in and say “me!! ooooh, me!!”, and I’m going to try REAL hard not to right now. I’m at a point in my life where everything should be just fine and hunky dory, but instead, I feel like a miserable mass of quivering blob flesh 93.390878% of the time. We just bought our first house (at a ridiculously cheap price, and we’re finding out the hard way that … well, it’s not so cheap to FIX.). I have happy children, a happy husband, and I’m hoping happy tortoises. I think they’re happy. Anyway, I’ve been dealing with my depression… gosh. Since after the birth of my second chud. It was like the postpartum never went away, and next thing I know, I’m also a good 40 pounds overweight, miserable, sad, and on top of it, dealing with a close relative of mine that is near a mental breakdown. I also have a very close friend who deals with the same shit, day in and day out. I would LOVE a dress like this, just for a day… Then for HER to have the dress, just for a day. And I’m done. It feels SO weird asking for something. I haven’t done that for myself in a long time.

    Pee.Ess. I think you look absolutely beautiful, with or without that extra 40 pounds. And that’s not just me sayin’ it, either. <3

  160. Ditto to what everyone else has said – you are beautiful, inside and out and ZOMG BIG BOOBS!!!! (Wow! And I’m a heterosexual postmenopausal gal too!).

    Seriously, I remember the initial red dress post from a couple of years ago (and how gorgeous you looked then too), and it made me all inspired and shit (and brought a tear to my eye). But the thing that stuck out to me the most was how you told us to go find our own red dress, even if it wasn’t a red dress – just something that we’d always wanted that we thought we couldn’t have because it seemed too outlandish and not sensible. I emailed a link to this post to several of my friends and asked them, “What’s your red dress? Email me back and tell me!” I had a few email me back and say how cool the post was, but not one told me what their red dress was. I don’t know if they were too embarrassed to tell me, or thought they couldn’t have their red dress, or, like me, they had a hard time thinking about what it was exactly. It just seemed so extravagant to think you could have your red dress, and so almost too painful to think about what it was.

    Well, I just realized tonight as I read this post that I’ve had my red dress for the last year or so. My red dress is that I have always wanted to be an artist, but I thought I didn’t have the talent. I’d dabble on and off through the years, but I’d always put it away and forget about it. But not this time. In the last year I’ve been doing all kinds of things: drawing, intuitive painting, collage and other mediums, as often as I can. I love it. I still don’t know if I have talent, and I’m still in the learning stages, but I do love it very much.

    It does seem like an outrageous luxury; I don’t know that it will ever pay off money-wise, (and the supplies cost a fair amount of $ too) but all I know is that I am enjoying the heck out of it, and that’s all that matters. So thank you, Jenny, for your inspiration. I really think that, because of that post almost two years ago, I definitely have you to thank for helping me go after and get my red dress. That means a lot to me.

    Zippy recently posted I'm not a Twitter virgin anymore - #GOD HELP US.

  161. awesome, Jenny. and it’s all you.

    Sue J. recently posted Just Hold the Cat (Updated).

  162. YOU are gorgeous and your friend is an awesome photographer. I have a red dress I bought for a never going to happen wedding, it came too small. I should send it on to someone, it looks almost like that one you have only tea length and it’s corseted too, which didn’t matter, I was still too big :(.

    Jamie recently posted WW.

  163. I love you woman.

    I need me a red dress. Maybe it will empower me to actually speak of what I have been desperately hiding for all this time.

    Maybe you are right. Maybe a little bit of whimsy will give me the power to let it all go.

    Kelley @ magnetoboldtoo recently posted I had to take down the last post cause apparently my blog does not like tally whackers..

  164. I was diagnosed with High Anxiety a little over a year ago. My partner insisted that I go get checked after she found me standing over my son’s lunch box for well over ten minutes panicking that I had not packed enough protein into it. Stricken paralyzed with thoughts that he might be hungry for a few hours. I am being treated, but it is not a straight line, of course.

    Something about being diagnosed has made me live boldly and do things that scare me. Sometimes it feels a little like pressing on a sore place to feel just how bad it can still feel…sometimes it feels like I am trying to find that magical thing that snaps me into a stronger version of myself. Either way, in the past year, I have quit my job, gone to Nepal, worked in Haiti for three months for an NGO. And in the midst of this badass processing of all I experienced in Haiti, I have committed to the scariest thing of all…I am blogging it. I have been touching on it for some time, but Monday I am opening it all up for inspection and commenting. My heart races just writing that.

    You have been a part of what has inspired me. If I got a red dress, I would take the dangerous pictures and write the dangerous post around them. I would let people know why I think being visible, in whatever condition you are in, is so important. And why I am choosing this moment to be visible.

    Oh, and how brilliant it would be to send it on it’s way again.

    xo

  165. Wow you look amazing, know that to be true. Red Dress is such a good idea – all gals should have one. I have a pair of completely unsensible pink sequinned shoes for exactly the same reason.

    weezafish recently posted Well I Never ... No. 2.

  166. Beautiful. I so love that last shot. You look like you see me, and a hundred years in the future, while ignoring all the meaningless ephemeral crap trying to distract you – all at the same time. Those eyes say “I’m game, bring it on.”

    Thank you.

  167. 171
    RookieMom Heather

    My baby, my precious sweet last little baby, is going off to daycare. And it’s hard. And I can’t wait. And I’m all over the place about it.

    RookieMom Heather recently posted Flashback Friday: 10 years ago today.

  168. Yessssssss!!!!! This is fucking amazing. My red dress is to travel the world. Yes, it is impractical and, yes, I am making a lot of sacrifices to do it and, YES, my own mother calls me selfish. But you know what? That’s where my joy is and, in May, I begin.

    I think it is our duty to hunt down our red dress and, as you said, once we find it, wear the shit out of it.

    Kim recently posted You Can Become What You Want To Be (Or, The Story of How I Lost 85 Pounds).

  169. First of all, you look amazing. A-maze-ing.

    Where do I start. 2011 beat me nearly to death. In march, I had my send child. In June, I found myself alone, parenting both children on my own. When my husband left, so did 75% of my income. I’m stuck in a no-name town, with a house I can no longer afford, yet can’t sell, with debt piled up to my ears. I had to turn in my car for one that’s 15 yrs old because I couldn’t make the payments. I even had to give up my bed (swapped a king out for a twin) because I had to move both girls out of the bedrooms I lovingly decorated by hand, and into my master bedroom, in order to try to find a roommate to help me afford this damn house. In Sept I had major surgery on my hand, which used up the last of my PTO/sick days at work, and then in December I had to have a full elbow replacement, which resulted in an entire month of paychecks for $0.00. Last week, I went to my Ob/Gyn for a yearly exam and she found a mass. Her exact words were “it’s either a cyst or a tumor, let’s hope for a cyst”. The jury is still out. I don’t sleep, can barely eat, yet somehow I’m still 25 lbs overweight. I’m stressed, I’m exhausted, and I just want to look in the mirror and see something beautiful instead of a mess, for a change.

  170. I’d do ya. …I’m just sayin’….

  171. Actually, you are beautiful. It’s okay to say it right out loud!

  172. I love this idea. You are such a beautiful and smart woman. I only discovered your blog a few months ago, and during even my darkest moments, you have made me laugh and inspired me. I have north to an amazing baby girl last March and have since been struggling with Postpartum Depression & Anxiety. It has been a challenge and then some. I am still looking for my red dress. It is somewhere out there. I have to believe that if only for my daughter’s sake.

  173. I need a red dress..soon. February 5th would be my daughter’s 12th birthday. February 10th is the 4th anniversary of her death. I am still standing. I breathe every day. I even got remarried in October. I would love to feel fabulous for no reason. The end.

    Karen Sanders recently posted The Birthday Bitch Hat.

  174. OK, I was trying to figure out why the hell my post was # 1 right after I posted when I was posting what I thought was the 120ish post, and I was reading through and saw Someone You Know’s post, and it sounds like she/he is in a hell of a lot of pain. Jenny, I’m sure you’re on it, but I want to chime in: please hang in there, sweetie! Don’t give up. It sounds like you have many people who care about you and would miss you if you didn’t hang on. If you’re feeling suicidal, please call the national crisis hotline at 1-800-784-2433 or find your local hotline at suicidehotlines.com. It may not seem like it now, but you really have so much to live for. You can find another job you’re passionate about, or make one. I know what it’s like to feel hopeless and want to leave, but if you hang on, it will get better. Please stay and make it to Jan. 29 and beyond. Please!

    Zippy recently posted I'm not a Twitter virgin anymore - #GOD HELP US.

  175. and also, you are fantastically beautiful in this dress

    Karen Sanders recently posted The Birthday Bitch Hat.

  176. What lovely photos of you–you are a beautiful woman! I would love to have a red dress for my little sister–she was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma right before Christmas and is going through chemotherapy. She’s lost all her hair and is too sick to work (and her paycheck pays her mortgage) and she is stressed and bored and exhausted and scared and a lot of other things. I love her a ton and think she would totally be uplifted by a red dress experience. Thank you for putting this out there. :)

  177. These are fantastic! Especially the ones that show off your teeth. Have I mentioned how great your teeth are?

    Heather recently posted Yes He Do!.

  178. The sheer genius behind this project is full of so much heart, sentiment and love that I’m overwhelmed by it. The idea of looking in the mirror, and seeing something other than sick, just once, would be incredible.
    Thank you, for what you’ve started. <3 xo

  179. The photos are beautiful. I always love the red dress stories.

    Mary recently posted Style File: Winter Lady.

  180. You’re so beautiful it kinda makes me hate myself a wee little bit…

    I love the dress, and I love the idea behind the whole project. Makes me wanna go out and buy a red dress just to wear the hell out of it. I should wear a red dress to my surgery in a couple of weeks… except the hospital would probably want to admit me to the psych ward…

    pottymouthmommy recently posted The sincerest form of flattery.

  181. you are rocking the HE double hockey sticks out of that dress sister.

    Thank you.

    I was just asked officiate my little brother’s wedding in August. Do you think that might be a bit much for a beach wedding?

  182. First of all, Jenny, you are gorgeous in that real woman- gosh I wish I looked like her beauty. And looking at those pictures, if I’d never read your blog before I’d never believe you had an ounce of self consciousness.

    This craptastic week capped off a couple really crappy months. My dad was diagnosed with lung cancer in May and finished treatments (successfully- thank god) in November only to be followed by open heart surgery for Mom two weeks ago and learning on Thursday that I am losing my job. Dad is better, Mom is healing but I am scared shitless at the prospect of unemployment. I’ve been lucky, I’ve dodged quite a few layoff bullets and I’ve tried to be appreciative of that. But now, after 10 years working an admittedly mind numbing but comfortable job, I’m facing a job search at nearly 40, with a half finished bachelor’s degree and no idea what I even what I want to be when I grow up.

    I was saving my traveling red dress request for when I had something to celebrate (turning 40 in Sept) or was thinner- or better yet both- but I kinda realized tonight that’s exactly what the traveling red dress is NOT about. So now I kinda need the red dress.

  183. Ah, Jenny you are gorgeous as ever. I know it’s been a hard year. You seemed so tired when I saw you on line to check in at BlogHer, as you zoomed in and out in a day. But that evening you were gracious as always to the many who came to pay homage and connect in your bathroom within a ballroom.

    What I am saying here is that I admire how much you give and give, even when others would be retreating, hunkering down inside themselves and letting nothing escape. I know you have the urge to hunker, but you override that to connect with us here. You understand that you and your own flawed, authentic self are an inspiration to so many. And that is true courage my friend.

    Besides, you look kick-ass in that dress. I am more than 20 pounds over-weight at this point and would kill for those boobs, as it’s all gut on me since i had the twins. Sigh. A thousand hugs to you.

    Varda (SquashedMom) recently posted Art, art, art, and a few words.

  184. You are an absolutely beautiful inside and out. That goes to everyone here!!!

    I’m a very petite person( 5’1, barely a 100lb, all while being in my 20s,) so if any other small girls are out there looking for their “red dress” I might have a few to offer. I have two prom dresses that my grandmother altered for me and some other things so please contact me to see them.

    KatPerez recently posted Sick again.

  185. I don’t have anywhere to wear to the red dress to but for some reason I’d like to try one on to see if I can feel the magic you talk about. Next week I turn 29. My son died three years ago the day of my birthday. I’d like a chance at a dress, please.

  186. You look Mahvalous Jenny Dahling!

    We emailed back before Christmas about the widowed elderly ladies (there are 15 ladies ages 85 to 96) here in Stockton, California that truly need to be “Jennified”. I truly believe that if they each had a turn to put on a beautiful – princess-like – belle of the ball gown and have their photo taken for them to have as a keepsake of the day – IT WILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE in their very lonely lives.

    I suppose I could try to purchase one but it isn’t only the dress. It is the spirit and story that comes with the dress. That the dress that they put on and pose for the camera has a life of its own. It has traveled to women all over the world and now it is their turn to feel like they were 60 or 70 years younger and I can almost guarantee that when you see the photos, they will have a blush in their cheeks that match the dress and a twinkle in their eyes as they remember what is was like to be that girl they almost forgot.

    Thank you for listening Jenny and if by chance you are able to point that red dress in the direction of Stockton, California I may know of a stuffed dead animal that is an orphan and needs a home.

    Sheri Fenley
    Stockton, California

    Sheri Fenley recently posted A Pleasant Surprise.

  187. Fighting cancer for the second time, got my (literal) battle scars from round one that I’m proud to show off. Tired from working my ass off to make ends meet, running kids here and there, fighting this damn disease, and loving every minute of it. Why? I’m ALIVE!!! It’s nearly impossible to say have the time to look my best everyday, but I’m here and breathing and have an awesome husband and two beautiful girls who I would do anything for. We’re broke as heck but have each other, food to eat, clothes on our backs and a roof over our heads, so at this point I have to have faith all will work out, right? A little escape from reality wearing a fiery red ball gown would be awesome!!!

  188. You are gorgeous. The dress is stunning. I’m making a red dress for a Klingon wedding performance for a con – would consider sending it traveling after except I’m 4’8 and a size 20, so it’s unlikely to fit anyone else.

    Tina recently posted Rivet Me.

  189. I would LOVE a chance at that dress. I don’t even know what to say about why I want to wear it… I don’t know where to start. I’m celebrating being 40 and not hating it. I always thought I would.. I was terrified of it, and now that it’s here I have found that I LOVE IT! I have survived a nightmare marriage that I had to sneak away from, a junkie brother that I nurtured and enabled up until I had to remove him from my life, a son trying to follow in his uncle’s footsteps.. and a lifetime of facing ocd head on. Life has always being a terribly scary place and I’m just now realizing that it’s also an incredibly beautiful place, and I am an incredibly beautiful girl who deserves to wear an incredibly red dress!

  190. Wow. LOVE, love love this post. I happened up on it on the anniversary of my celebrating 3-yrs post-bone marrow transplant for leukemia. I lost my old me and have a new me, but I’m ALIVE (that’s what they tell me, of course, I know it’s true too). When I went through the transplant, it went sideways and I ended up with complete organ failure, a coma, 3 months in the hospital and lost sooooo much of me, my hair, my feeling, skin, taste, glands, organ function and muscle, but I still wouldn’t trade the suffering for what God has created out of it. I’m ABOUT to update my blog with the 3-year-review of sorts so I hope you subscribe so you visit that blog before it gets posted! Also, that blog was a real ministry to people and continues to be – and this before i knew ‘how to blog’ so it’s not all marketed or anything. Fortunately people find it though. Would love to top off the recovery with a red dress story myself! Don’t know as I could pull that beauty thing off as well as you did though with all my post-transplant, medication-induced flub-flub! wow! You look GORGEOUS!

    Krista English recently posted Long Overdue Update: Believing God More!.

  191. 195
    Lance Lankford

    Jenny! These pics are AWESOME! BUT there’s no way your boobs are too big! They’re amazing and I’m a big mo. You know how judgey we are…. I totally sympathize/empathize/understand/live with your weight issues. I’ll tell you what my friends tell me.. You are fabulous just the way you are.

  192. Your boobs are not too big – they are amazing! I hope that does not sound strange to say… but I’m serious, your bustline would make many envious! :) I think you look like a million dollars. This is a great cause that you are supporting.

  193. 197
    Teri Robinson

    I would love a red dress to celebrate that fact that at age 41 I am getting braces. I will finally have a real smile! I will be flashing my metal mouth at everyone! I wear between a 14-16 and would adore a big, sparkly, poofy red dress to run around town in with some friends while we celebrate. I will always remember the photoshoot in the barn with all of the parade decorations. Truly magical!

  194. 198
    Lance Lankford

    PS– can I get your friend to take my photos? I want to look as good as you.

  195. You are fucking GORGEOUS, honey. Wear the hell out of that red dress and feel fabulous! :)

  196. Jenny…you are so beautiful and such an inspiration to me. I fight Lupus and Fibro and RA, and right now it’s kicking my ass. To see you and these pictures are know that other people are fighting the same fight brings me such hope.

    I can’t tell you what it would mean to me to have a turn in a beautiful red dress. The girl I used to be would wear the shit out of a beautiful red dress, and maybe that would bring her back to me in some little way.

    Laura recently posted Still Whiny.

  197. I am inspired. A red dress is not what I need but I think I know what is and am working out the details in my head for my OWN project!

    brokensaint recently posted Illness.

  198. You are stunning and an inspiration! Thanks for sharing these gorgeous photos – Maille’s work is outstanding. Thank you so much for bringing such joy to your site. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate what you do – you send joy out into the universe, and I hope it finds you back. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  199. Oh, I love the pictures. I love seeing all the sides of you. My favorite is in the first set of nine, middle row, the one all the way to the right, where you are kinda looking like you’re giving a smile that you are not taking anything too seriously.
    I have passed forty and am way more overweight than you, by-the-by! (And sister, your boobs can never be too big! I once weighed my boobs, and they are hefty! Yours are probably only 2-3 pounds each. Just sayin’.
    I keep reading about the red dress, and oh, how I want to do a red dress shoot. However, I have multiple disabilities, including severe chemical sensitivity, and I don’t think there could possibly be a gorgeous red dress made of, umm, organic, nontoxic, fragrance-free, low-impact dyed fabric? If there was, and I got to wear it, I promise I would send it to any other chemically injured person who wanted it, and they would do the same!
    I think probably it’s not possible, but just thought I’d put it out there.

    Sharon Wachsler recently posted Gluten-Free Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies.

  200. this is amazing. And I love it. I think I need to do this. Hopefully somehow a red dress will find me – or I’ll just go buy one from that company, as the size you had would work for me!

    Maybe that will be my I finished my half marathon present from tomorrow…. a half marathon that I couldn’t train for because of a lot of stuff in my head. But you know what, I’m here, I’m going to be up at 3am to do it, and I’m going to get through that 13.1, dang it. And this post was the perfect inspiration to keep me going when my feet don’t want to.

  201. These pics are incredibly awesome. You are beautiful.

    I would love a red dress to wear to my first Blog Meet next week…. I think I need to find one! I struggle with social anxiety and depression and find it very difficult to meet and speak to new people in the real life 3D world. I am scared. But i think if i had a red dress.. i wouldn’t be so scared. All the time.

    Gillian recently posted I think I am a test guinea pig.....

  202. Oh Jenny. Your humour, your grace, your insight. I don’t know how you got to be this way, but don’t change. You’re internet magic.

    And you’re one hell of a babe.

    Kimbo recently posted Today’s snow photo is for the cat people..

  203. I am scared to ask for the red dress. What if I am the one I doesn’t work for?

  204. SO FUCKING GORGEOUS.

    I just can’t even tell you how much your joy campaign and your sense of humor mean to me, as corny as that sounds. I’m so fucking hard on myself but reading your blog always makes me feel better about myself and my struggles. Thank you for being brave and therefore making it easier for me to do the same.

    emmysuh recently posted THUNDERSHIRT Review — I feel like there should be trumpets sounding every time I say THUNDERSHIRT!.

  205. You are gorgeous and your smile is infectious!

    I need to find a red dress and a photographer and find a little joy.

    Cause Joy IS ALWAYS worth it! ;-)

  206. First think off, you look beautiful. I hope to look half that good in a traveling red dress.

    2011 was a bad year. I take care of my small family and it seems like I let it all fall apart. My husband attempted suicide, my parents and sister disowned us, and I lost my job. It seemed like every time I got us afloat we would fall down again. There is always a silver lining right?

    2012 has got to be a better year. One for moving past the bad event of the year before, forgiving myself and my family and friend who haven’t been there for us, and finding a way to show my 12year old daughter that I am stong person despite the weekly flair ups I have with anxiety now. I want her to see the person I am not who I become when I suffer.

  207. Gorgeous. Simply gorgeous. Have just been introduced to the story of the red dress and it’s given me tingles. I’m getting my own red dress and having a photoshoot with my favourite photographer so I too can feel “me” again. Love it.

  208. I just wanted to say again that I think you look amazing and I hope you FELT PRETTY because you sure look it and I love your makeup.

    I think its anything we wear that makes us all feel gorgeous and alive.

    You’re an inspiration for sharing with people.

    But seriously, get a kettle. That water ain’t gonna boil itself :)

    Pish Posh recently posted Shit My Boyfriend Says: Bathroom Spray Edition.

  209. Everytime I read these posts, I always end up crying. Thank you for sharing this with the world, you are so inspiring and such an amazing and beautiful woman, both inside and out.

  210. YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL!!!

    Those photos are ridiculously stunning. And, even though you’re a million times more gorgeous than I, we have the exact same body. Seriously, I could TOTALLY be your body double. I don’t know what for but if your book gets turned into a movie and there are parts in it that require two of you, then I could TOTALLY be in those parts. Like, alter-ego Jenny? But only from the back because while I also have mousy brown hair, I’m not nearly as gorgeous.

    Also, this is the first comment I’ve ever left and it’s because I felt compelled to tell you how pretty you are. That’s right, I didn’t even comment to get a mini Beyonce. Now THAT is saying something.

  211. So BRILLIANT!!!

    Adriana_G recently posted Week 4 ~ "From a High Angle".

  212. Hello there Blogess….I would like to hav a chance at that red dress and no, I’m not going to put it on Beyonce! I have a friend who has been through too much for too long and dang it to heck, it’s enough already!! I want to go over with a red dress and a camera. I want to love, love, love her in that red dress and then I want to pass it on to the next person who is going through too much for too long. Oh Pul-eeeese Queen Bloggess…send me a red dress….

  213. Every one of you responding to let Jenny know how much she means to you, to share your stories, to offer words of support and encouragement for others, or just to comment on Jenny’s supreme hotness… I love you all because you are what is real and good.

  214. I could really use a bit of red dress magic. For four years now my husband and I have been trying to start our family. Two years ago we got pregnant with twins but lost them. Its been a battle to say the least. Being over weight and having severe social anxiety doesn’t help either. Life tends to feel hopeless at times and I don’t really know what the red dress could fix, but i do know it would make just about anyone feel special. Thank you for giving us weirdos a voice and keep up the good work!

  215. I know this isn’t the point of this post, and believe me the point of it isn’t lost, but you are absolutely stunning. I’m so glad you wrote this. xoxo

    Aubrey Anne recently posted What I'll never quite be.

  216. Those photos are amazing! You are absolutely gorgeous – both inside and out! I look forward to your posts – they bring some light and laughter into what has been hard time for me! I was having a rather bad day back in June and someone suggested reading your blog to cheer me up…it was the day you wrote about Beyonce'; I’ve been a fan ever since! You’ve made me realize I’m not alone in my struggles. It’s been hard, RA decided it was going to take residence in my body; and it has been a lousy tenant. The Chemo meds, the prednisone has wrecked havoc on me, my hair – so I’ve been really struggling with looking in the mirror. I would love to take a red dress out in Jacksonville, FL for the time of its life and share the memory with you.

  217. 221
    Abby Knoblauch

    As someone with serious body issues, I realize that over 200 people telling you you’re stunning and gorgeous and beautiful (and amazing) might not convince you of those things, true as they may be. On the other hand, it certainly doesn’t suck. Adding my voice to the cheer-choir here: really. truly. beautiful. And honestly? Pretty seriously hot.

  218. Two things: first, love those gorgeous pictures and LOVE what you said about your arms. Reminds me of the part in Bossypants where Tina Fey talks about loving her body and features because they remind her of different members of her family (like having her father’s eyes, mother’s feet, nephew’s smile, something like that).
    Second, just had a moment of epiphany when I realized that my horse (who is a chestnut, appropriately) is my “red dress.” Expensive, extravagant, but brings me SO MUCH joy. So if I ever do a red dress photo shoot, obviously it’s going to have to include my horse…

  219. I’d wear the hell out of a red dress but I can’t do it because they don’t make dresses for Godzilla. Spent a good part of my life feeling like I am on the outside looking in, but I kind of like it that way. It makes for good blog fodder and more importantly it is me.

    You be you and I’ll be me. The world works really well that way. Looks to me like that dress fits you just fine.

    Jack@TheJackB recently posted Inside the Blogger’s Studio- A Dream, Er Nightmare.

  220. You look fantastic! I don’t wear red; perhaps if I could wear it as well as you, I would. Around the corner, I’ll celebrate 44 and my one year canciversary – I might just have to go on the hunt for my own red dress.

  221. I love this idea and would love to participate. I am getting married in a few months and have had a really hard time finding a dress that will fit me, that I like and that I can afford. I am a big girl (size 24) and we are getting married on a shoestring budget. Add to that, my future father-in-law passed away this week and we have had to use a sizable chunk of the money we had earmarked for the wedding to pay for funeral expenses.

    I have no need for a big, fancy dress that I’ll wear once and then put away in a box for the rest of my life so something like this project would help me/us tremendously. Plus, I love the idea that another woman will enjoy a dress that I shared my love and joy with my fiance in. Powerful emotions leave traces, so these dresses will be traveling portals of happiness. What do I need to do to get involved?

  222. 226
    Dorianna Hampson

    I love reading about the Traveling Red Dress. It really puts everything into perspective. I’m a working single Mom who is struggling to be a woman and a Mom at the same time. My ex is fighting me at every turn, trying to control my life (where I go, what I do) and I just want my Son to know that I love him. He knows I love him – he tells me every time I tell him “I know Mom – you tell me all the time” Good. But I’m also lucky because I have him, I am me, and that’s pretty awesome. It can always be worse, and I can always have less. So thank you for inspiring not only me, but so many others.

  223. Love this. I know there are plenty of others who need this more than me, but it’s been a rough month. My mother-in-law is dying of brain cancer. My husband and his dad and brother have been taking care of her at home, and I’ve been helping where I can. I’m sitting with her now as everyone else sleeps to make sure she gets what she needs and doesn’t try to get out of bed. Ayway…I could use a little pick up to make me feel pretty right about now. Love the blog…and you look awesome in the dress…I could only hope to look so comfortable in my own skin.

  224. Hi Jenny,
    I just wanted to tell you how much your blog has helped me in the last few months.After my parents divorced, they got so rapped up in their new lives that they forgot they still had one more kid to raise. I had to put my university plans on hold so that someone would be there to take care of my little sister. For a while I wanted to be angry and bitter, but then I realized that life doesn’t always go the way you plan it to, and that’s ok.
    You are such an inspiration. No matter what happens, you are strong and open and constantly hilarious. Not to get corny or anything, but it’s almost like your attitude is a giant red dress for the world :-)

    You really are the best!!

  225. I’m going to be 40 on Feb. 24. It’s a big deal for me and it’s the first of the “big” birthdays that is unnerving me. I’ve had my own battles with silver ribbon issues. And through it all I have a husband and friends that love me in spite of my BS.

    I have a lot of blessings in my life, but years 38 and 39 have been an absolute M-Fer. I’m actually looking forward to 40 and hoping that things will be better.

    Red is my favorite color … I would love a red dress to wear for a while for #40.

  226. 230
    Kristen Marie

    Jenny –
    You are absolutely stunning. I am so jealous of your smile! It’s unbelievable. When I smile, my eyes get all scrunched up and I can’t see. Plus, my mouth just kind of goes side to side, not up like it’s supposed to. I look ridiculous. I’m not even a little bit exaggerating. I model, professionally, and have been told on more than one occasion specifically not to smile. I wish I had yours!!!
    – Kristen

  227. Simply Beautiful! I can see your heart shining through!

  228. Thanks for giving me the courage to climb out on my roof and gaze at the moon. I’m a (almost) 32 year old single mom of three kids. I’ve been to hell and back the past ten years of my life. My dad committed suicide when I was 21 leaving me an emotional disaster. I married a man who was a predator… who I later realized was only after my inheritance. After 7 years of intense abuse and leaving me an emotional wreck, I walked out on him with our three children. Now 2 and a half years later I am starting over. I am over-coming and I am conquering the world. My life is finally all coming together.
    But it’s tough. There are nights I weep from loneliness.pain.anger.exhaustion. After reading your blog…the post about why are we afraid to be who we really want to be? “Why are we afraid to climb out on our roof’s and gaze at the moon?” I love the moon…the peacefulness it brings to me. One night, after an extremely tough day I noticed the moon was full. I threw open my window and crawled out onto my roof, to sit and stare. (This was in January…in Northern Ohio. It.was.cold. But wonderful.) Thank you for permission to do the things the little girl inside of me wants to do. While the moon isn’t a red dress, it’s my red dress.

  229. You’re a beautiful lady. Don’t let anyone, including yourself, tell you any different.

  230. You look absolutely beautiful! And thank you reminding us all to take a moment and be happy that we are us. I hope to give out a lot of my old formal dresses soon. At least my old proms & formals will good some something!

    Manda recently posted Muz Love: Besties.

  231. Absolutely beautiful. You look stunning and I love your attitude on life. You are definitely an inspiration to me and I am sure many others out there. You go lady <3

    Mistress Arawynn recently posted Heart Hair Pin.

  232. First of all I want to tell you that your pictures are gorgeous. I too am about 20 lbs heavier than I have been since I was pregnant with my kids. I hate it. I feel so insecure about it and just not right. Anyway, I am in a horrible custody battle that seems to never end and I would like to celebrate the fact that my ex has no control over me at all anymore, that he can no longer put me down or make me feel so low about myself and unworthy. That I know I am worth it and no one can take that away from me, that I am a great mother to two wonderful, beautiful, smart children and that it is me that has made them that way. And to celebrate that I will never let myself get to the point I was with him ever in my life again.
    Thank you for your wonderful stories. I just started reading but everything I have read I have loved.

  233. Too look as good as you do after having a child?? I mean I can only HOPE to look as good as that when I have children. You’re gorgeous.

    Ps. Love love LOVE the smoky eye. You rocked it like the rock star you are.

    LynnDee recently posted My Body Is a BAMF (& Yours Is Too).

  234. You made me not hate my arms. That’s a pretty huge accomplishment.

    Amanda recently posted and that's how I knew I might be a masochist.

  235. 239
    Kristin Wood

    This post is EXACTLY what I needed to read tonight. Your pictures are amazing and you’re words rang true, as they always do. I am a photographer and I just gave away a free boudoir session to someone who is beautiful on the inside that was nominated by someone else. I had to sift through several nominations until I found one that reminded me so much of myself that I found myself in tears. After I told her that she had won, she messaged me with more information about herself and I swear…she is me only in a different body…with different parents of course. She described some of her recent battles lately that resemble yours…and my own of course. Our minds are full of our own demons and we just have to find the beauty inside ourselves and the strength to run them off. Thank you so much for sharing what you do on your blog. I think you inspire so many people including myself. I would love to borrow this red dress and do a photo shoot in it and pass it on to many girls and do their photos. I have caught myself on ebay scouring the plus sized “red dresses” to buy for myself but the idea seemed silly to do that. It would definitely not be silly if you would let me borrow yours. I would absolutely be honored and happy to be able to spread the generosity. Thank you for being you!

  236. Those photos are devine… I am a rather overweight… single mumma of 3… who suffers from depression and anxiety and spends alot of time hiding from the world and all the amazing things it could hold for me… and I am soon going to turn 30 and it scared the bejesus out of me that I am wasting away in the shadows… your photos make me think I should do something similar to celebrate being 30 in April… might have to plan something to capture me at that point… thanks for all the funny posts.. but also thankyou for the deeper ones that always make me feel a little more OK… XXX

    Alisa recently posted Chocolate chip hair goodies.

  237. You, my dear, look absolutely stunning! I hope the dress worked in lifting your spirits.

    I also love the Marilyn Monroe-inspired photo!

    Just gorgeous!

    Cheryl D. recently posted Just Saying!.

  238. Joy is always worth it. What a perfect sentiment. I’m in one of the most challenging years for my phd in counseling… so that tidbit is something for me to keep around. You look beautiful, Jenny.

  239. 243
    Michelle Meyer

    Gorgeous, AMAZING pictures! You go, Jenny!!!

  240. 244
    Briar Smith

    Hi, I know that there are people who need your dress more than I do, but I still wanted to share my story. I have borderline personality disorder, which isn’t really well understood. I’m 20, but I should have never survived to this point. I’ve had my valleys and fought my battles, and so far I’m still kicking, or at least trying to. I love your blog because it reminds me that I am not alone, and that I can make things better for myself. I have admitted that there are things I can’t control, like the fact that I go see the doctor to find out if my own “ovaries that are trying to kill me” have gotten worse. I’m going to do everything I can to find my own red dress as a sort of promise to myself that I won’t let this break me when nothing else has. If I do, I’ll let you know.

  241. Fab photos. And “Joy is always worth it” is going up on my mirror (it was that or a spaceman helmet).

  242. Don’t sell yourself short! Those photos are beautiful. I would love to wear the traveling red dress, but I’m quite outside that considerable size range. And there are so many stories being posted here, that I feel like mine would cheapen them.. Nevertheless – I’m struggling with Depression Anxiety, the loss of my father, and am teetering on the edge of self-harm. And I’m in college. Sometimes all I want to do is hide in my closet, with absolutely all my clothes piled in around me. And maybe one day, I’ll have the courage to wear a strapless red ball gown.

    Thanks for all the encouragement you give me, and many of your readers. You’re an inspiration – and a vision in that dress!

  243. I know what it’s like to see the beauty in everything except yourself, but if you could see in yourself what I see you would be amazed. You are lovely, red dress or otherwise. Shine on, you crazy diamond.

    Joules recently posted Trifextra Challenge – Love. Exciting And New..

  244. I find it hard to admit that what I’m fighting is me. I’m fighting my most basic instinct to devalue myself and I’m fighting to feel like I deserve to be a part of society.

  245. gosh you’re sooooooooooooo beautiful honey, i love those pictures, and your poses are inspiring, i wish i had a red dress to send, i do have a red gown, but it’s just long and straight and strapless, not all fancy schmancy

  246. You are absolutely stunning, inside and out.

    Kayla recently posted It's just like Legally Blonde, but with business school..

  247. Jenny. im agoraphobia. i live in austin. and the delightful yard chickens help me get out. i know to normal people that seems silly. but those silly little chickens help me.

  248. You are a bundle of womanly hotness and also have something even better which is an amazing personality, a kind face and a wonderful soul. Showed that red dress who was boss didn’t you?

  249. TEARS! Jenny, you are beautiful!!!!!!!!

  250. Wow, you look fantastic in it!

    Mayor Gia recently posted An Interview with a Boyfriend - Part II.

  251. ps/// would you be chill with making these available for print? cause my house needs them.

  252. Gosh, you’re beautiful!

  253. You take one hell of a picture. You look stunning, just stunning. Hugs

  254. Also your face looks about twelve in some of those shots. Don’t fear the forty, it really does only get better.

  255. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about beauty and realizing that I don’t remember ever looking in the mirror and thinking I looked beautiful, not since I was 7, maybe, and didn’t yet know about the tornado of depression and anxiety barreling toward me. Back then I would have rocked a red dress so hard, would have worn it and a tiara to school and run around the playground at top speed and DEMANDED everyone acknowledge I was the queen to rule them all. The greatest tragedy of my life is that I’ve lost that girl, and lost any belief that people SHOULD see me. Now I pray they don’t, and it’s working so well. I’m only 28. I think I need to get myself a red dress before it’s too late.

  256. 260
    golfinggrannie

    You look terrific! The wonderful thing, as one goes through the late thirties, is that you finally realise who you are and that people can take it or leave it because that’s how it is and you don’t give a f… about how they feel about it. That’s why I found my forties the best decade – able to relax and stop trying to compete at last. This is how I am. If you like it – good. If you don’t – tough!

  257. You look stunning in this dress and the photos are beautiful. I feel inspired to do the same, thank you x

    Corinne recently posted New Blog!.

  258. I just LOVE this project… I still don’t know what my red dress is but when I figure it out I hope I can jump into it wholeheartedly and not hesitate. Jenny you are such an inspiration please know that people are listening to you and you really are making a difference, not just in the minds of a few blog readers, but in the world.

    /end cheese session…

    Rebecca recently posted It’s the Little Things {Pinterest & Curly Curls}.

  259. Staying alive is the name of that tune for a reason.

    Life is a bitch, and so much of this life shit tries to kill your body, mind or spirit.

    Making it to 40 is an achievement.

    You are hot in the red dress.

    Wish you would stop bagging your boobs and weight.

    So to speak. Ahem.

    We sort of like you like you are.

    Remember, you have friends. Despite yourself.

    HogsAteMySister recently posted A Broken Body, A Map of Life.

  260. 264
    Graceinchaos

    Absolutely gorgeous pictures and words. Thank you. Sending a red dress out on Monday.

  261. Kudos to you, as hard as it may be to believe the positive words you wrote about yourself.

    Kudos indeed.

    No.. wait, I can’t mess with my system here:

    KUDOS, KUDOS, MOTHERFUCKER. <3

    ___________________________________________________

    Stephanie C | Seriously? Really?? Seriously? recently posted Hair Washing 101.

  262. Ooo that dress is so pretty. I would love to feel pretty again.
    I have been dealing with PPD for almost three years now. My son turns 3 in March. I feel alone and just so tired most days. Now I come to find out that I might have inherited my grandfathers rare immune disease that is incurable. This winter has not been the rebirth that I hoped it would be.
    That dress is so pretty… I wonder if I would fit me. I am a 22 top and a 26/28 hip. Silly birthing hips…

  263. What a fabulous concept and such cool photos, you really have nothing to worry about, you rock!

    MotherWifeMe recently posted Space monster attacks husband….

  264. You look gorgeous :)

    Sarah Rooftops recently posted Recipe: Very Imperfect Cranachan.

  265. You look fabulous! Stunning! No lie. I wouldn’t lie. I just wouldn’t say it. But if your boobs are too big, then at least they look THAT great, lady. Maybe they need to be flaunted a bit more? You might appreciate them if you did!

    I want to participate in the red dress project with my BFF, Amy.( http://sassypantz.blogspot.com/ )I can buy my own red dress, and then I’m happy to send it on to someone who needs it. I’ve been feeling like the Universe has been throwing rocks at me since I moved to LA about 8yrs ago, and a recent conversation with friend I hadn’t spoken to since I left home had her saying, “You’re still beautiful and wonderful and talented. Even if you don’t remember that right now. ” I DON’T even remember what it was like to be that fearless girl anymore. I too suffer from depression and anxiety, and it’s only been in the last 6 months that I’ve felt like maybe I can undo 8 years of crap. Maybe. I’m a little scared to step out from shelter….but I kinda want to.

    Amy’s sitch is much worse. She left an alcoholic abusive jerk with their two kids 7yrs ago….and met the first man I’ve ever seen her truly, TRULY give her heart and soul to (I’ve known her since we were 17. We’re 43 now.). He’s a good man. But he is currently in rehab- because in the last 3 yrs, things have slowly been spiralling out of control,til this past year when it just was inexcusable. She’s thrilled he’s getting help. I want her to remember that she’s important too, not just him and his issues (not that I’m dismissing them- don’t get me wrong). She puts him first, and has had to, for far too long now, because of this, and I think she’s forgotten she’s worth saving, too.

    She’s about the perfect size for the red dress you’re wearing here. I can get my own. But if you send one to her, I’ll fly to her in Indianapolis and find a photographer and dammit, we’ll have some good BFF pics to share!

    Much thanks. Mad love. And carpe awesome.

  266. Seriously gorgeous! You are stunning.
    This is an awesome project & I’d love to take part. I guess I want to celebrate still having my mum after a shit 12 months (won’t go into details) and the red dress would be an amazing way to do this :)

    Caroline recently posted Happy birthday to me.

  267. Thank you.

  268. 272
    Jamie In Indy

    I am looking 50 in the eye and trying to bring myself out of this funk. I am always the one cheering everyone else. Now I feel like I need some cheering and it seems to me everyone close to me has disappeared into their own lives. I would love the chance to look have has beautiful as you do in that gorgeous dress.

  269. Absolutely STUNNING!! ?

  270. Breathtaking!

    You, Jenny, are as beautiful on the outside as on the inside.

    And you, Jenny’s Unstoppable Army of Awesome, are just as beautiful.

  271. You ARE really beautiful and you DO deserve to wear something that makes you furiously happy. Everybody does.

    Only a week or so ago I bought myself the most impractical, teetering, sexy platform heels I could find in the shop for a party. I can barely walk down stairs in them…I can only see myself wearing them to one or two social occasions per year…they’re so over-the-top…they’re utterly inappropriate…

    …But man, it feels so damn good wearing them. I’m not going to put them away in my wardrobe either: they’re staying out in full view to remind myself that yes, I AM worth it.

    Claire J recently posted The Dream Bookshelf 1.

  272. I’d like to wear a red dress like that. I’ve just returned from spending a week with my mother and visiting my aunt, both of whom have Alzheimer’s. My grandmother died of Alzheimer’s and I’m really struggling with how to face my future knowing this is likely what it contains. I don’t know what to do with the years that lay in between now and then.

  273. You are gorgeous! We are our own worst enemies when it comes to self image. We can never be 21 again. Why try. You are a marvelous person with a smokin bod. You have a wonderful family. Sounds good to me! :)

  274. 1. You are gorgeous. 2. Thank you for saying the things that I find so hard to say. To know there’s someone else out there as kickass as you who feels the same way I do makes the world a little less hugely intimidating.

  275. I love the message a simple red dress can pass on! Also, you look stunning :)

  276. I have to admit, you doubt yourself, you worry about your appearance and your place in the world – and yet you posted those pictures for all to see. I am in awe of your bravery, your courage – and your Inner and Outer Beauty.

    Thank you, Jenny!

    -Maura

    Maura @ Eve Was Partially Right recently posted Clean Eating In the News: Arsenic in Apple Juices.

  277. Ahhh! You are frickin’ gorgeous! This is such a wonderful project.

    Amanda recently posted happy friday!.

  278. Thanks a lot, you made me cry. I hope you’re happy! Btw, those pictures are stunning and you’re amazing, even without a red dress. Love ya!

    Lorca Damon recently posted If I Had Brain Powers, You’d Be Covered in Honey Mustard Right Now.

  279. Bloggess (I can’t call you Jenny here, because you look like a queen, so you need a title),
    I’m 29, average height, a comfortable size 6, average boobs, and I have frustrating curly hair that everyone else says they want, but right now I am green with envy over the confidence you exude, the smolder in your eyes, and that smile that lights up a… webpage. And I’m not sure I’d be able to post a photo shoot of myself on my blog without complete anxiety over what people would think.

    In a nutshell, Hotdamn, Sister!

    Gesci recently posted Thruscross Reservoir and the River Washburn.

  280. Loved this so much. Your last paragraph resonated, Jenny, because if we’re forced to think about it, there must be so many things we deny ourselves because we think they’re frivolous. I LOVE that you said “Joy is always worth it”. Thank you for this post (and for all of the rest!).

    P.S. ‘Joy is always worth it’ would make a bitchin’ tattoo!

  281. Jenny, you are fricken beautiful! Red dress or not, you’re gorgeous.
    Never let anyone tell you curves aren’t sexy damnit.

    I do something similar to the red dress every so often. When i’m feeling low it’s amazing what just getting dolled up can do for your self worth. I go out and get stared at by people and it makes me feel GOOD. I can cover up my scars and all the ugly bits that make me want to cry when I look in a mirror, and I can just feel pretty.

    There were points over the past 4 years where I could have really used a red dress. Struggling with infertility which drove me to the brink, there was so much self hate, so much loathing and I couldn’t feel attractive knowing my insides were broken and (in my mind) rotten.
    6 weeks ago I gave birth to my miracle second son, a child I never thought i’d have and a kid I fought so hard for. Fertility treatment and recurrent losses almost killed me, the only thing that kept me fighting was my eldest, another miracle who really shouldn’t exist either. My FSH and LH are usually so low that I simply don’t produce eggs, and those few I do produce aren’t very good. We hit the jackpot and right now? My boys are MY red dress. They’ve pulled me back from the brink, they make me smile, they make me feel amazing.

    Though i’d still love to march about in a gorgeous dress and feel sexy. Sexy isn’t something i’ve felt in a very long time. Infertility does that to you, after having so many strangers looking at your bits and sticking various things up there, you really end up feeling pretty unsexy.

  282. You have *SUCH* a lovely smile!

  283. Oh dear Jenny I need a red dress. I am 53 and about to get my first apartment after 20+ years of marriage but I’m excited about that. I have a daughter that is 25 and suffers from all of the above you have dealt with . I am her best friend and her biggest supporter . She suffers from BP, BPD, CD and PTSD . Has done great for years and now Kaboom! Out of no where. I think we may need 2 red dresses and we would definitely rock a photo shoot.

    boo reynolds recently posted Inspiration Part 8 : Friends.

  284. Stunning photos….truly.

    I need a red dress, you look fearless and I need a little of that magic, I think. Life has been breaking me down lately. Raising 3 kids, one of whom has autism has been breaking my spirit. I feel like I am doing it all wrong….

    Jenny, you are an inspiration. Thank you.

  285. You look so beautiful in those photos! You definitely wear the hell out of that dress! I would love to wear a pretty red dress for a few hours. I have never been to a prom (or a ball) so never had the need to own or wear one. I am battling depression to a lesser degree, an emotional eating disorder and low self esteem (and almost 50! gah!). Unfortunately, I am a big girl (size 22-24) so your lovely dress will not do. Someday I hope to find a dress that makes me feel beautiful, inside and out. Hugs to you for all you do. <3

  286. You look gorgeous love! Remember that laugh lines and wrinkles proved you lived your life well!

    Amanda Jillian recently posted Unblocked.

  287. Joy! And thank you!

    Kathleen recently posted Into Adieu.

  288. Oh Jenny, you ARE so beautiful! :)

    Midianite Manna recently posted Gone Fishin.' Or on stike. Whatever..

  289. 293
    Keaven Neely

    I found one on Twitter. It came in the mail last week, and couldn’t have been at a better time. I’m trying to decide what, where, and when to do with my dress. But I can’t wait. I’ll feel like a genuine princess.

  290. Love your blog, love your message, and love those Bangin’ Double D’s. Score one for the curvy chicks, rocking it since back in the day. Red Dress Project celebrates being awesome, because we are so much better than the social norm. Lets put a silver bow on it (it’s this seasons “put a bird on it”) and add it to the conversation.

  291. I have to say you look really beautiful in that dress.

  292. Dear Jenny, You are beautiful inside and out. Anyone who has soft, cushy, smothering grandmother arms is a beauty in my book.

    I had a red dress once, when I was in my anorexic stage and so thin my head looked like one of those wobble dolls on a too thin neck. But I loved that dress, felt beautiful and sexy in that dress like I haven’t since. This project of yours makes me weep for the tenderness and generosity of your heart.

    Take care of you.

    Mary recently posted Morning Has Broken.

  293. About a month ago I was diagnosed with RA. I’m 28. I was devastated. My friends have been amazing…making fun of me, getting me drunk, feeding me…and telling me I only got RA to be just like you :-) Ok…so maybe I need new friends, BUT being just like you wouldn’t be such a bad thing.
    I need a red dress…and prob some match skanky underwear. This was my 4th autoimmune diagnosis, and the hardest one yet (T1 diabetic x20 years, autoimmune thyroiditis & celiac).
    Thanks for making me laugh amidst so many tears as of late!

    Anyone in the Bryan/College Station area need a dress? Would love to help others!!

  294. In that last b/w photo you look like pictures I’ve seen of Marlene Dietrich (except you have better eyebrows). Seriously.

  295. Big wow ma’am; and that’s all I will say about that…………

    Bill Dorman recently posted Thoughts to ponder and it’s not SOPA.

  296. I’ve heard of your blog before but found it for the first time today. And honestly, I really love it. You’re just kind of… you, and you happen to be very likable, and that’s cool. :) PS – Love the dress!

    J.J. recently posted Katy Perry and Me.

  297. Jenny, you’re a stone, cold FOX! :) and you wore the hell out of that dress :)

  298. You are so beautiful!!!! I adore you!

    I want a red dress, but I’m not ready to do a shoot yet. I’m thinking that I want to do it at the cabin that we had when I was a kid. That requires a road trip. And a lot of luck because we don’t own it any more, the current owners have let it go to hell and it’s falling down. So . . . it’s dangerous and it’s breaking and entering! Perfect! (Well, is it breaking and entering if the door won’t shut because the frame is too damaged? Damn them for neglecting a piece of my heart.)

    When I’m ready for the road trip, I’ll seek a dress. Can’t wait!

    Milaka recently posted Spectacular Spectacular.

  299. I only hope the makers of this beautiful dress are ready for the onslaught of orders these photos will undoubtably generate!!

    Jane recently posted Waiting for water.  Kathmandu.  Nepal..

  300. The last picture is so damn powerful. As it your words aren’t strong enough, your eyes have such a message behind them. I’m just, wow! With that said, I couldn’t find a way to make this work for me until this morning. I want to have a prom. Then all our lovely dresses can be donated to our local high schools for the real prom. We live in a part of Appalachia that doesn’t always make life easy for people, and plenty of our girls don’t get the experience of their high school prom because they’re too embarrassed about not having a dress. Well, we’ll see what we can do. Thanks for sending me a lightning bolt of inspiration!

    Breathe Chick recently posted My Love Affair with Marshmallow Creme....And The Aunt Who Loved Me.

  301. You my dear are stunning in every way possible. You have no idea how powerful and amazing you really are.

  302. Stunning!

  303. Jenny, you are beautiful inside & out.

  304. These are so beautiful and you look perfect. Totally perfect. This whole concept is so powerful.

    BTW, if anyone in Detroit sees this and wants a photoshoot, I’d love to do it. I also have a red dress size 10 I’d love to use and then pass on to someone else.

  305. You look beautiful. There are no other words to describe it.
    I live in the UK and would love to wear a travelling red dress for one day. I’ve battled and overcome depression and then battled it again and now I’m helping someone else battle it. I’m not sure which is harder. But both make me who I am. Worthy.

    Antonia recently posted The power of words….

  306. Wonderful photos! And even more wonderful words! Thank you Jenny.

    I’m writing to put my name in line for the traveling red dress. Not for me — for my good friend who was just diagnosed with bone cancer. Within 2 weeks, she will undergo 2-3 months of chemo. Then she needs to undergo a surgery which will remove her femur and her hip (the location of the tumor). Then, another 2-3 months of chemo. I think the courage and inspiration that comes with the traveling red dress will help keep her faith high.

    coffeewithjulie recently posted Royal Winnipeg Ballet’s Svengali: An Amateur’s Review.

  307. You are so beautiful! You are amazing!

    Toni K recently posted Valentines Cards for Vets.

  308. I just love you! You are fabulous!

  309. You are simply beautiful.

    I could only hope to look half as good in a red dress. Carrying around over 100 extra pounds, I’m not just “a little curvy”. I’m fat, and not very pretty on the outside. It’s ok, most days, I’m ok with that. My kids love me the way I am, and they matter a lot. But I wish I had the nerve to boldly wear the red dress. I look at photos of me, and I don’t see me.. I see someone who swallowed me, and damn she is not something I care to look at, and a red dress just draws attention to that even more. It’s more like a train wreck. I’m looking BACK at 40, and thinking, yea, I’m still here.

    meg recently posted So, there you are...

  310. No need for a dress. I just wanted you to know that you are absolutely beautiful! I am about 50 pounds overweight and still feel good (most of the time). You do a lot of good for a lot of people. Thanks!

  311. 315
    maggie parry

    You are without a doubt the bravest person I know.

  312. You are stunning and such an inspiration! Thank you.

  313. I love you so much Jenny. This is awesome.

    Boston Mamas recently posted Disney on Ice: Dare to Dream.

  314. Well crap, I come here to laugh, not cry.

    You are so beautiful! I can’t wait to read what’s to come on the red dress blog.

  315. The red dress posts always bring tears to my eyes. Thanks to all of the people brave enough to share their stories. Jenny–Thank you for reminding me that joy is always worth it. I would like to participate but I feel that others need this red dress more than me. I’ve been afraid to share my story so far. I do want to celebrate that I made it these last 16 years. I suffered from severe depression & anxiety in my 20’s. I am coming up on my 40th birthday and need to remember to inject a little more joy in my life. For anyone suffering from suicidal thoughts, please remember that depression lies.

  316. You are such an amazing inspiration and you look gorgeous!!!

    The Goddess of Books recently posted Deadly Little Secret.

  317. I don’t want the dress for me but for a friend. Not just a friend but my bestest friend. She is amazing and adorable and honest and can’t see that for herself. This would be perfect for her.

  318. You are beautiful.
    And now I love my squishy arms, so thanks for that. :)

  319. Those are some seriously awesome photos. You look amazing!

  320. You made me cry over my morning coffee. In a good way.

    Reading (and chickens) recently posted A Slice Of Happy: Mix CD Swap.

  321. This is beautiful, Jenny. I struggle with so many things that are similar or identical. I loved reading this.

  322. You are just stunning, Jenny. I’d love a red dress, but there are so many other worthy candidates that I won’t ask. Instead, I’m keeping my eyes open in case I see something worthy of the cause so that I could put one in circulation. I just want to thank you for inspiring so many to love themselves and be kind to others. I’m not sure how I survived before I discovered you. Can’t wait for the book!

    Jozemom recently posted Chrome Users: Try the WordPress.com Extension.

  323. you are amazing and beautiful and inspiring. thank you!

  324. Jenny Lawson, you are a full-hearted beauty, and I salute you!

    Elsmama recently posted My stuff came!.

  325. I’m celebrating almost 1 yr of being separated from my husband. I’m celebrating my freedom to do the things I choose without having someone tell me I’m stupid, or that’s a dumb idea. I’m recovering from that relationship one day at a time….and overcoming that fear he instilled in me.

    Lori Vann recently posted Can’t Get Enough….

  326. You are totally amazing Jenny! You’re beautiful, you’re inspiring, you’re funny, and I love you! You have a purpose, and that purpose is to inspire those around you with your intelligence, your wit, your humour, your struggles, and with the very essence of the beautiful person that you are! Never, never question whether you are pretty enough, smart enough, or good enough. Because… you are MORE than enough. You’re a wonderful wife, mother, and inspiring person!
    Thank you for being you!
    Lisa

    P.S. Red looks sexy as hell on you! :)

  327. You look amazing and I love that you are willing to celebrate your laugh and worry lines! Sometimes we all need a little reminder that a life worth living sometimes leaves it marks.

  328. 332
    Julie Quinn

    I have one word for you lady. REAL. You are so beautifully real. And that is amazing.

  329. the pics are BEAUTIFUL! and i totally need a red dress. My husband and i have been through hell the last 5 months. he was injured in afghanistan by a sniper and lost his right kidney. he crashed twice in surgery, had 49units of blood, and was on a ventilator for 10 days. he was only off it 6 hours by the time i could get to him in Germany. He is doing AMAZING now. he has nerve damage in both legs from shrapnel but is walking, breathing… here. through all this i battaled major issues with grief. i felt so robbed by everything we were “missing” out on due to him being injured and coming home early. there was still so much i wanted to accomplish, so much HE wanted to accomplish. this changed his entire career path, everything. i have battaled those feelings of grief, my ever constant battle with depression and of course to fall in love all over again with my battle scared husband. i would LOVE to have a new red dress to help me start the new chapter in our lives that we have just begun. one of a new “normal” that comes with doc appts and limitations and a whole lot of faith.

    Erica recently posted New year, new start.

  330. I’ve already put on the facebook page that I am willing to do a red dress photoshoot for anyone who is located near Tampa, FL. Please look for me on the red dress facebook fan page and get in touch if this applies to you. I don’t have a red dress of my own yet, but I’m looking.
    Leslie in Tampa….

  331. Damn girl – you look amazing. I too have been struggling with who I am – I’m not the 115lb high school sophomore anymore. I’m 35 lbs over weight and my goal on the year is health. I am at increased risk for type 2 diabetes after 2 rough gestational diabetes experiences, and my husband is considered obese. We need this. I don’t ever want to be a stick again – I want to be healthy. I’m turning 35 this year. I’ve decided that since my weight loss goal and age are the same, this is the year. I’ve signed up for a gym, I have running gear, I am registered for a half marathon in August that I will walk if I have to but hope to run a lot of. This is the year I take back a little bit of me! Running, getting in shape, creating fun things. This is MY year.
    It’s funny – I have to go out and buy an evening gown for a Mardi Gras ball this week, and I think now I might just give those red dresses an extra look. Because really, who doesn’t feel glamorous in red!

  332. You are so beautiful the way you are! Thank you for inspiring us! <3

  333. It’s official. You made me cry this morning. But good cry. You’re sooo beautiful Jenny. I’m looking pretty hard into 50 coming up. I’m sitting here in my red hoodie this morning and decided I was pretty damn bitchin’. thanks.

  334. You are an inspiration that usually brings me to tears (either through laughter or heartfelt inspiration). Thank you for all you do for everyone, reader and non-readers alike. Good luck. And your book is on my “Birthday Wishlist.” AJ (my husband who vehemently commiserates with Victor) already has it marked down for me. Thank you again.

  335. Wowza, Jenny! You look fabulous…you ARE fabulous!

    Kyla recently posted Ketchup..

  336. 340
    Vanessa Bancilhon

    i don’t have a sad hard luck story. And I’m certainly not gonna go showering you with all these butt crawling up compliments. I have only just recently discovered your blog. I have decided I’m staying to hear more. And why shouldn’t I have a piece of red in my life…even if its only for an hour.

  337. I have what feels like crippling social anxiety on top of Seasonal Affective Disorder, I feel like I have to fake my way through situations while inside I’m screaming to go home and hide under the covers. I’ve ducked into more bathrooms to cry that I can count.
    This week I was part of a fitness studio grand opening. Someone thinks I’m capible of teaching a weight class. I feel unqualified and unprepared, but tomorrow evening I will pack up all the will I can muster and march in there and pretend I know what the hell I am doing. Then I will promptly go in the back room and cry and wonder when the studio owner is going to see through it all and cancel my class.

  338. You are beautiful…inside and out!

  339. You are absolutely beautiful!

  340. Jenny, you look STUNNING. If only I could be that free in front of the camera!!!

  341. Jenny,
    Thank you! These pictures are beautiful and your sentiments struck a chord in me. Too often, I worry about what others think about me, or am focused too much on what I perceive as what is wrong with me. I need to flip that and focus on why I am a strong, confident woman…..even though I may be scared on the inside.

  342. Wow! You look amazing! I’m thinking now about what my “Red dress” is & what I should be tearing myself to each day, rather than denying myself as I’m a mum & my money goes on my children first.

    Anna

    DigForTea recently posted What type of mummy blogger will I be?.

  343. I would love a chance to borrow the traveling red dress. I have never had the courage to dress up and feel beautiful. My life consists of baggy sweatshirts and jeans for fear others will see how overweight I have become. Thank you for having the courage to share your gorgeous photos.

  344. “You should wear with pride the scars on your skin / They remember the adventures and the places you’ve been…” – Poi Dog Pondering

  345. Girl, you are WORKING that dress. Well done hottie.

  346. The idea is inspiring and the pics are stunning! Thank you!!!!

  347. If I could have just one day…it would be the day that you just described…I’m in tears at the hope you just gave me on, of all days…today. Mom to five, Lupus, RA, fibro…and a few others…I spend my life sacrificing for the greater good of the Cosmic Alliance. Never just a day for me. I think I may just have to do some “creative accounting” and go find me a red dress. Signed, Your Friendly Canuck Neighbourhood Chronic Badass xx

  348. Jenny, You are truly beautiful! Thank you for sharing, inspiring, giving, laughing, creating and being you! I have a close friend who could use a visit from a red dress. She’s a vibrate, beautiful, joyful woman who’s had one too many snags in the reproductive area and currently recovering from the latest. She reads your blog as faithfully as I do and as soon as I read your PS, she instantly popped into my head. I am currently living on the east side of PA and she’s all the way in north west corner of Ohio, so, stopping in for a visit isn’t something I can do. But, hopefully, this is something I can do. Thank you for this wonderful opportunity!

  349. Wow, you look great!

    Wouldn’t it be awesome to get one of these before Friday which is “National Wear Red Day” to raise awareness for women’s heart health. This coincides with the opening of a new store I will be peddling my “upcycled” dresses in. (upcycled dresses are made from old t-shirts. I cut them up, mix them up and create little one of a kind fashions for girls). Why does this matter you say? Well I have lost both my mother and mother-in-law in the past 13 months to weak hearts. They were my “rocks” when my husband died over 2 years ago. I will be honoring them this Friday by wearing red. May not be as grand as that beautiful dress, but it’ll definitely be RED. Guess I should create a little red dress for my daughter to wear to school that day too:)

  350. You look fabulous!! And I love this whole red dress movement. Thanks for reminding us to remember ourselves. Empower each other and rebel in the daily beauty that is life.

  351. Jenny, you are seriously one of the most beautiful and inspiring women I’ve ever seen! And you have the biggest heart on the internet!
    I’m lucky enough to have the bestest of best friends. A woman who has been through more trauma than I care to imagine in her life, yet always comes out smiling. And who has helped me through the hardest 2 years of my life. I have survived the breakdown of a longterm relationship, the realisation of how destructive and abusive that relationship was, the loss of my beloved Dad, and my mother being ill. Some days it’s hard to just get out of bed. Without her I don’t know that I would have got this far. She is my personal “Red-dress Fairy”, she lends me her own dresses, and buys me them as presents “just because”. Even on the lowest days, we remember to tell each other how beautiful and amazing we are. I love her like no other. Every woman should have a Jenny, or a Melanie to get their back on ‘those’ days. :)

  352. Girl, you are GORGEOUS inside and out. All those things you pointed out (weight, hair, wrinkles), I never even saw them. You rock that dress. But you rock it all the time! I love following you (in a very non-stalker-y way) and you’re one of the highlights of my day. Much love to you!

  353. I just noticed a sumptuously beaded red ball gown in the window of a shop. I’m a voluptuous gal but I’m going to check it out and keep my fingers crossed that I’ll be able to buy it and send it forward to others. I’m dealing w/infertility and would love to have a picture reminding me that I’m still a WOMAN…VIBRANT…VIABLE.

  354. I am fighting the stigma of being a SAHM. I have been out of work for over a year which is the longest stint since I started working part-time jobs in college. I am fighting the “you are STILL pumping to breastfeed your baby stigma” as my daughter approaches her 6 month milestone on the planet. I get weird looks when I talk about my family. My husband has an almost 21 year old son. I have an 8 year old son. Together, we have a daughter. I won a boudoir photo session, but am too scared to strip down to lingerie for the camera. Two c-sections and cellulite will do that to a girl. I feel looks when I can’t seem to get enough to eat because of breastfeeding. I know I am big, but those calories are feeding my baby. I feel undertall for my weight. I wish I were 5’6″ instead of 5’0″. I wish my foot were not so wide. I wish I felt so damn sexy in sweats and a t-shirt let alone a red dress. Thank you for sharing your story and amazing photos. I commend and admire you.

  355. I’ve been in love with this project since I first read about it, Jenny. If I was a glass-half-full kind of person and had one wish to wish, it’d be to be photographed beautifully in one of these exceptional dresses. And if I believed in hope with no discernible foundation, I’d hope one of these beautiful dresses would show up at my door one day. Maybe fate will lend a hand.

  356. You are awesome. Thank you.

  357. I keep telling myself to comment on these. I keep telling myself I’m worth it. But I find reasons to not follow through. Maybe I’ll post my comment this time, maybe I won’t. We’ll see.
    My divorce was finalized on the 25th. He gave me sole custody to the two kids we had together. I also have a child from a previous relationship. My oldest was my first miracle baby. I was told I’d never have a baby naturally. And he proved the doctors wrong. He was the easiest baby, the most amazing toddler… Things got harder as he got older. He’ll be 11 in March. He has ADHD, ODD, anxiety and OCD. In spite of all of these things, he is a smart, amazing little man. And last fall he asked me to find his biological father, because he wanted to meet him. I found him, and I drove him to meet him. They are amazing together. And on Feb 4th, he’s going to live with him for 6 months. It’s hard. It’s heart-breaking, and I am so happy and excited for him and his bio dad. He’s an incredible little man, and I want to share him with the world. And no matter how much it hurts to let him go, it’s what he needs, and as his Mommy, it’s my duty and delight to give him anything and everything he needs.
    My littler ones are 3 years old and 19 months old. My 3 year old is being tested for autism. He started pre-k in August and since then has started talking! It’s amazing to see him come out of his shell. To see his little personality come alive. To glow. I’m a touchy-feely person, and it was so hard holding back from touches that are loving in my eyes, but scary/uncomfortable/intimidating to him. But now, he’s okay with them. I get to say I love you with a touch, not just my eyes and words now. He’s beautiful.
    The baby was not the easiest. He had severe colic and acid reflux. I had post partum depression. And somewhere during all of that, my husband crossed a line that could never be uncrossed, and we began to end. But my baby, ohhhh he’s amazing. He is the happiest little man I’ve ever known. He always has a smile, a laugh, a cuddle. When my days feel full of stress and worry, he is the one that feels it, and comes to me to ease it.
    I love all three of my little guys with all I have.
    As to me… I just went through a divorce. My oldest son is moving to another state to live with his bio dad for the first time. Two of my three kids are special needs. I have been searching for a job since November. Nobody wants to hire a woman that’s been a stay at home mom for 4 years. My internet goes out tomorrow. (Thank the Goddess for my BlackBerry, so I have a limited connection to the www.) I have bouts of depression, with moments of hope. I may be broke and have no idea of when or how I will make ends meet, 2 of my kids may never see their daddy again (his choice), 1 of my kids will be leaving me, but I still have hope. However fragile. However fleeting. It’s there. Hope that my babies are young enough that they won’t be hurt by his absence. Hope that my oldest discovers more love, more about himself, more about the world, and is the better for it. Hope that someone out there will take a chance on me, hire me, so I can take care of my babies and myself. Hope that all of this is leading us to a better life. And hope that it won’t be as hard and scary as it seems to be right now.
    I don’t feel beautiful. I don’t feel like the woman I know I am inside. I don’t know how to let her out. To share her with anyone but myself. But I hope someday I will. And maybe that day will be with a red dress that comes to me in a box. Maybe not. But I can hope.

    Shay recently posted My phone makes me look naughty.

  358. You are the bravest woman. You fearlessly tell us all about the difficulties of your life, and how bad you sometimes feel about yourself, and at the same time share with us these amazing photos that prove just how beautiful and fearless you really are. Thank you. Thank you so much for your inspiration.

  359. 363
    Aubrey Bell

    Jenny, you are gorgeous! And you’re a continual reminder that I CAN fight RA and win. I’m taking the chemo drugs and all the other drugs to fight the fibromyalgia and neuropathy that the RA has brought on. And all the drugs and supplements to fight the side effects of all those other drugs. And it sucks.

    I’m currently battling through day 5 of one of the worst flares I’ve ever experienced. If my crappy rheumatologist ever calls me back, I’ll start my 9th round of prednisone in 3 years. I’m a single mom of 3, living with my parents, and struggling through more bad days than good. But you, you beautiful thing you, you give me hope. You inspire me to keep fighting. To give the best of myself to my kids AND to myself. And to find happiness in everything I can. So thank you!

  360. You are totally beautiful inside and out, made of awesomeness and dreams (a slight twist on your own words). Your words bring joy and inspiration and you are right — joy is always worth it. We should all pass it on!

  361. I’m all sorts of giddy you’ve posted this…yes, you ARE here! And we love that you are….after all, who else but you could share with us a hatted duck, a 5 ft. chicken, and other curiosities that deepen our own laugh lines and bring joy to an otherwise mousy-brown day?
    PS. I took myself to a salon the other day for the first time in 2 years…they transformed my mousy-brown-grey-white “do” into a bouncy mousy-grey-white “do”(What was left of the brown has been cut off and tossed aside). I had pep in my step and it now looks like I could be taken a bit more seriously, as in…they don’t card me anymore. It’s all good, after all, I am freakin’ 40!!! Thanks for your inspiration.

    Theresa (Miss Charlotte) recently posted Mercredi Fantaisie: Itsy Bitsy Edition.

  362. I would LOVE for my best friend to have her red dress moment! She has lost over 150 lbs, and has overcome many obstacles, fears and anxieties. Recently she just lost her mother to dementia who she was very close to. I would never wish watching your parent deteriorate like that on anyone. We’ve been BFF’s for 20 years, and not once during that time has she had her real chance to shine.

    My boyfriend is also working to build up a photography portfolio, and would absolutely donate his time to anyone in our area (Louisville, KY) to show off their red dress moment!

    The red dress in these pics is beautiful! I also have to say that you look absolutely gorgeous in that dress Jenny! It doesn’t matter what size you are or what your hair/face/body has gone thru. Women with curves and imperfections are more beautiful! It’s about what’s inside and your life’s experiences that shine thru those imperfections. It’s about finding who you really are, becoming comfortable and positive about it, and embracing who your truly are.

    Stephanie H recently posted My feelings on eating meat..

  363. You are beautiful in that red dress. And in anything you put on.

    Becky recently posted Know Your Target Audience.

  364. You are beautiful. And your boobs look amazing in that dress.

    I would like a chance at a red dress. Last year was incredibly hard for me. My dad was sick, and I was pregnant. He took a turn for the worse about the time I was too far along to travel any more. I had Noah on April 3, and he spent a week in the NICU. Two days after I checked out of the hospital, I started running a fever of about 103. Turned out I was sick, too. Once we got both of us recuperated (it took a couple of weeks), we just needed to make it to Noah’s doctor appointment the afternoon of April 18 to be cleared to travel.

    My dad passed away that morning.

    Nine days later, I would find myself huddled in the hallway of our house in Tuscaloosa, Ala., with my husband, Noah, our two dogs and our cat while an EF-4 tornado ripped apart the city. We were lucky to not be hit by the tornado — it passed about 1/4 mile from us — but the devastation was overwhelming. We had no electricity or clean water, so we set out to stay with friends in a nearby town amid thousands of other drivers, bumper to bumper, the only light from red taillights and yellow-white headlights.

    In the following weeks, I was unable to sleep. I found myself screaming at my baby, feeling the need to just leave my family and go live somewhere alone, wanting to throw Noah on the floor and leave him there when he cried. I said I didn’t want to be a mother. I told my husband, in all seriousness, that I wasn’t cut out for this and maybe we should consider giving him up and just going back to it being the two of us. Finally, after three straight days of no sleep at all, I could literally feel myself going crazy, and my husband insisted I call my doctor. She diagnosed me with postpartum depression.

    Even after starting meds, it was tough. Motherhood apparently has a bit of a learning curve. But I’ve survived so far. I even managed to make it through mono (I mean, really?! Who gets mono as an adult? 2011 seriously had it in for me.) while working full-time.

    I came off my meds in December (after a weaning process, approved by my doctor), and it was rough. Christmas was my dad’s favorite time of the year, and it was hard not having him there. But I stuck it out, and I’m here. I’m finally starting to feel like ME again.

    This past week we’ve seen some new challenges, namely that my husband lost his job somewhat unexpectedly. Thankfully he’s got a temporary bartending gig lined up — not ideal, but it’ll pay the bills.

    So, this is why I would like to have the red dress for a time. Because I. am. surviving. I don’t think I’m completely past the postpartum depression or postpartum anxiety that I’ve experienced, but I have finally reached a point where I can look that beady eyed little troll in the face and tell it to fuck off. And the red dress? Well, that would just be the exclamation point on the giant “Fuck you!” I’m finally giving to PPD and PPA.

    Misty @ The Family Math recently posted Guest posting over at The Momma Bird.

  365. Gorgeous!! You seriously need to frame that collage to remind yourself YOU are making the dress look beautiful. Not the reverse. :)

    Melinda recently posted Stakeout To Catch a Runaway.

  366. 370
    Tank is on E

    Just amazing!! I need to do this :) You look so beautiful and you look like YOU!

  367. That dress is fantastic, and so are you! Thank you for showing such bravery and that joy IS worth it. I have friends, both female AND male who could learn so much from this. Sharing!

  368. Jenny – You, darling woman, are truly and deeply beautiful, inside and out! You mentioned feeling purposeless…perhaps you haven’t noticed that you have found at least part of your purpose? Sharing your stories via your blogs and articles is bringing joy, laughter but most important of all, HOPE to thousands of people who have never had it before or who have lost it somewhere along the road. What greater purpose do you need, my dear, than to reach another soul who is lost, scared and in pain and bring them that moment of comfort and light when they are stumbling in the dark? What an amazing gift you bring and I hope that you connect with that soon and appreciate fully how important what you are doing really, truly is and how worthwhile it is. Let that knowledge sink in and fill you up, gf!! And I say only part of your purpose, because you are also modeling this awesome behavior to your daughter and thus perhaps bringing yet another person into the world who will light the way for others down the road. Keep lighting up the darkness, beautiful woman!

  369. Oh young one, do not fret over your weight. No one could dispute that you look fabulous in that dress.

    Bodaciousboomer recently posted Rumours of my demise are premature….

  370. Is there a way to submit someones name to receive a red dress?

  371. I’m currently living in the WORST place I’ve ever lived, working a job that I love/hate, and looking for a new job so desperately that most days, I can’t stand myself. Unfortunately, there’s one more thing I hate about life right now… I have two AMAZING friends that I love.

    They’re both happy that I’m going to move on soon, but we also know that it’ll never be the same for the three of us. I want a photo shoot where all three of us (all plus to different degrees) wear the same red dress, so that we have something to remember our crazy/terrible/wonderful times together.

  372. I’m a fan of reading your stuff, because you’re not a pretender. Kudos to you for that. Seeing the pics of you in the red dress gives me goosebumps because you can sense, in those pics, the empowerment. I have struggled with abusive relationships for most of my life and am finally, at almost 40, finding my voice, speaking up for myself, and learning that it’s ok to need things and to want to be happy, though it’s a constant inner battle. I am learning to be kinder to myself and that it’s ok to expect to be treated kindly by others. Much love to you for the struggles you are facing and for having the strength to share them.

  373. Is there a little red dress, for little people…not actual little people, the kid version little people? My 7 year old suffers from pediatric bipolar disorder and needs to learn how to celebrate how wonderful she is. She is very insightful and gets that there is something wrong which makes her different…but what she needs to celebrate is how friggin awesome she is. She is not bipolar…she has bipolar disorder. Plus, girlfriend would love to rock a red dress and pose for pics…totally her gig.

    made this last year…check her out

    (I’ve tried emailing you but no response yet. Can you email me? ~ Jenny)

  374. 378
    Apryl's Antics

    I don’t need a dress. I just wanted to tell you that I think you’re beautiful.

  375. You get so many wonderful comments that I doubt one more will make a difference. But I just had to tell you that this post brought tears to my eyes. Jenny, you are such a beautiful soul, but also a beautiful woman. And these photos, and you in that red dress, are simply luscious!

    seabluelee recently posted Mirror, Mirror.

  376. I would love a chance at the dress.

    I’m a mom of 6 year old twin girls. I work outside the home full time. I have all the mental and physical baggage you can imagine comes with that. I have very little time for me and feel lost lately. I haven’t had a hair cut in close to a year. I’ve looked through the dresses available the past few weeks and feel self concious asking for one in my size. Despite working out 4 times a week the last 5 years, I’m still an 18.

    I signed us up for a “family formal” at our gym of all places on February 11. I have absolutely nothing to wear. I would love for the girls to feel their Mommy is beautiful – even if it’s only for a day.

  377. You are beautiful Jenny! And the girls look fabulous too!

    Amanda recently posted My Recent Conversation with Ed.

  378. Oh my goodness, you look amazing, even when you look a bit lost… I see a book jacket picture here. Which one would you choose?

    Kara recently posted Riley on Marketing and Food.

  379. you’re a legend, girl.

  380. Jenny-
    As usual, you are amazing. I love you for the simple fact that you are SO inspiring, generous, and simply wonderful in every way. You have truly touched my heart with this post with your honesty and the fact that you make ME feel more worth it.

    I have a horrible story. It’s one that you have heard before on my Wish Upon A Hero wish. I’m still battling. I will be battling for a long time. Probably the rest of my life with no end in sight. And that’s fine. I wouldn’t have this battle any other way. You see, my husband of two years decided that I was not good enough for him anymore. What’s worse is that our two daughters weren’t good enough either. They are three years old and six months old now. He decided to run off, after the really bad flooding that we had in my area, with some 19 year old girl. Since that time, he has changed his phone number and blocked me on Facebook as well. He left me with no income and two of the most precious little ones to look after. I have not heard from him now in five months.

    This is where your Christmas post comes in. You posted a link for Wish Upon A Hero for people to make Christmas wishes. Well, I posted that I wanted to be able to take a Phlebotomy class but did not have the tuition money for it. Well, after much praying and discovering that strangers can be the most amazing people EVER, I am taking my class. I’m bettering my life for not only me, but for my daughters as well. I’m the only one they have now and that is my struggle. I never have the time to just be me anymore. I have to be a mother, a nurse, a cab driver, a teacher, a librarian, a seamstress, a laundress, a handyman, and the list goes on. I don’t have anyone to watch my girls for me normally so that I can go out and have a night away. When they need me, I have to be there. I am the mother as well as the ‘father’ now. I’m fine with that.

    My class is going well. Very well. In fact, I’ve only got six weeks left until I’m fully certified as a Phlebotomist. I’m very proud of my accomplishments. So, I guess that I’m not only struggling through this crazy life that’s been forced upon me, but celebrating it as well. I get to celebrate my class and the fact that, had my husband not left, I may not be taking it. Everything happens for a reason. I know where I’m supposed to be and I have you to thank for helping me to get there. You will always have my utmost respect, admiration, and love. I hope that one day, I will be able to help others the way that you have so often helped me. Thank you. <3

    Devon recently posted Fire In Ice by Devon Stewart.

  381. This one is just as wonderful as the last, and you rocked it again! I am celebrating going to college fulltime at 52, 35 years after graduating highschool! I lost my job of 18 years when it closed, and even though I am terrified to do it, I started this month! I am trying to organize a TravelingRedDress event here in the Twin Cities, and would love if one of your dresses could make it! Here is the Facebook page, please help get the word out!

    https://www.facebook.com/pages/TravelingRedDress_MN/155987231179906

  382. The lines on your face tell a story of a life truly lived. You are absolutely gorgeous!

  383. You look gorgeous! I would love a chance at a red dress. I’m celebrating finally coming to terms with my depression after battling it for many years. I’ve finally been able to speak up, get help, and now I’m starting to feel like a normal person again after years of not.

  384. Would love to get on this list to wear the dress. How does one go about doing it?

  385. I guess we see you as the beautiful woman you really are…inside and out. Funny how the person we are in the mirror is not us.

  386. YOU are freakin’ beautiful. I wish you could see it the way we all do, or your husband does. I bet he wouldn’t change you for the world. I’m glad you feel the same deep down.

  387. You are beautiful, Jenny; don’t believe those other words in your head!

    I am a teacher, and our school could desperately use a red dress right now; in the past 8 months, 2 of our teachers have lost their battles with cancer, and 2 more were recently diagnosed cancer. All of these women were and are so strong in the face of what so many of us fear! They truly are heroes. Our building could really use a red dress, to honor those who are no longer with us and to remind those of us who are still here what strength there is in womanhood!

  388. “Joy is always worth it” – words to live by. I just read the original red dress post, followed by every linked story you included, then this one. I am absolutely in love with all of this! You have no idea how wide my smile is because of this – what a great start to my day :) You are an amazing woman miss Jenny the Bloggess!

    Kim @ The Family Practice recently posted Pumpkin Goodness and Badness.

  389. You Is Beautiful ! You Is Wonderful ! You is Powerful ! —with or without the Red Dress.

  390. One of your dresses happen to be maternity? That would be sweet. Maybe I don’t really need a red dress. Maybe I need to burn the fucking world down. You have with your red dress project: you’ve made an impact. Wearing one myself would just be getting burnt by you, which would be fun I might say, but I think I need my own fire to start. Bah.

    Jessie Hansen recently posted Everyone else is doing it....

  391. Damn you! You looked so pretty in that dress I had to go buy one. I just got diagnosed with a fatty liver. Do you know this means? No. More. Carbs. I’m so bummed! I really like bread! I thought something pretty might make me feel better.

  392. Stunning. Gorgeous. Beautiful. Jenny, you are absolutely amazing, inside and out.

  393. You are gorgeous, even if you think you’re overweight. You wear the hell out of that dress and am so happy to see a smile on that beautiful face of your’s!

  394. Gorgeous dress, gorgeous poses and gorgeous you! Having recovered from an e.d. myself, I know it’s sometimes hard to tune out the critical voice of your past self. Thank you for celebrating the beauty of your experiences, recoveries and life!

    Lisa W. Rosenberg recently posted Writing is Identity.

  395. Wow! You are so beautiful!!!
    I would love the red dress. Not for myself but for my sister. Two years ago her daughter was murdered due to domestic violence. Her partner of 8 years shot my sister in the shoulder, shot my niece (killing her instantly) and then killed himself. She was forced to live through that terror. She is a survivor! She is my hero. Loosing a child never goes away. And yet my sister lives on. She is so strong. I would love to gift her with the feeling of being a princess. I want her to show off her scars. I want her to be as proud of herself as I am of her. She deserves a red dress. :)

  396. Love the pics, love the dress, am energized at the movement. I would like to nominate my daughter. She’s 21 and fighting through a pregnancy that she’s not prepared for, battling depression and questioning the point of life. If I win, I’m taking her to get pics in this dress, pregnant belly and all!

  397. 401
    Melissa Marie

    Beautiful. You’re gorgeous. The project is gorgeous. Everytime I read about this stuff I cry. Beauty. Thank you.

  398. You are so gorgeous and so honest. Thank you so much for sharing your tales so openly. You are an inspiration to so many of us. (I’m tearing up as I type. I hope you know how far my gratitude goes.)

  399. Having Had the good fortune of meeting you in person, I know you are beautiful. It does not matter what size you are, there is a light shining through. You are iridescent. Incandescent.

    Should we start a foundation for this movement? The Red Dress Funds. I’d like to donate to this cause and would like to make my company match esp. Since my office is filled with women walking on crane legs…

  400. I started to read this post at work, but started to cry, so I’m going to save it for when I can hole up in my room without fear of someone walking in and realizing I was reading a blog instead of doing work…

  401. I am a woman, a mother, a wife . I am a caregiver,by trade and by life. I used to be an under 100 lbs most of my life even after 2 children . Right now im much larger lets just say size 16-20 will feet perfect lol. I always thought i was big even at 85 lbs! for the 1st time in my life im workin on me. I spent years of my life fighting the insecurities in me after years of sexual vrbal physical and mental abuse. I know this is the year I will win this fight and id love to show the world how i feel about it all in a lovely red dress!
    p.s. all you ladies are fabulous and when i win the lottery im sendin out a hundred red dresses.

  402. Thank you for being so awesome. So glad you are alive and so willing to share a piece of yourself with us here online – we are lucky.

  403. You are stunning. Inside and out.

  404. Jenny you are so beautiful! What a great photo shoot! I would love to wear this dress for a day, just to be spontaneous and crazy. Go to Target. :)

  405. Wait. There’s such a thing as having boobs that are too big? You lie!

    You look stunning. And this is an incredible & brave thing you are doing. And that dress is fantastic.

    I have big flabby arms. I hate them. I never wear strapless anything becaus of that. But that dress would make me throw that all away & be proud. You are my hero.

    Misty recently posted Weekly Whacked: Streetwalkers.

  406. Why I am making a Red Dress and sending it traveling (with an update on the fabric and the fabric.)

    http://sometimesiwriteitdown.blogspot.com/2012/01/sometimes-i-sew-things.html

  407. I’ve had two babies in 20 months and gone from a size 8 to a size 20. I’ve been battling a crippling post-partum depression. I hate the way I look, and I rarely put on anything but yoga pants and a long sleeve t-shirts. This past Christmas was a turning point…I went to the doctor, got on the right medication and have been taking care of myself. I’ve lost 9 pounds with 60 more to go. Still, I’ve never felt so fat and disgusting.

    Where can I sign up to feel beautiful again?

  408. You look ABSOLUTELY stunning. If I had a red dress like that, I would wear it all the time… until people started thinking I was weird… and then I would STILL wear it! It’s fabulous!

    LDiggitty recently posted jewels of the interweb (volume 10) - the redneck edition.

  409. That last photo is absolutely stunning! Such a great project! You are a beautiful person, inside and out……

  410. :’) you made me cry. Love this story, love the gathering of strength, wisdom & true beauty :)

  411. You are beautiful.

    TriGirl recently posted Goodnight K.I.S.S..

  412. Beautiful, Jenny, just beautiful!

    I’m not fat or heavy by any real means, but I just tried on a ball gown that was too large for me a few years ago and last night I popped some of the seams trying to fit in to it. Not even the super duper skinny making stuff from my wedding helped it fit… thank you for posting these. even without my own physical red dress, it makes me feel a little better about myself, even just for one day.

    Meg recently posted Exciting News!!.

  413. You look gorgeous, and your writing, subjects, honesty, wit — all of it — are nothing short of phenomenal! Thank you for the inspiration and joy you’ve shared and inspired!

  414. great pics….. it is not my battle that I am concerned with but the battle of a friend of mine. Kathy is just past 40 yrs. old and her husband Tim was laid off the week before Christmas. She was diagnosed with breast cancer 2 weeks ago as they were trying to get all dr appts caught up before they lost thier insurance. If the Red Dress is passed I have another wonderful woman friend photographer that I am sure would be willing to do the pics for posting. Again thank you for your wonder, inspiration, honesty and quirk…..

  415. You, my dear bloggess, are absolutely beautiful. And everything about the travelling red dress is amazing. Thank you so much for inciting courage in the hearts of women.

    Amy Moloney recently posted Knock Knock. Who's There? Zombie Epiphany. Zombie Epiphany Who?.

  416. I know I already commented, but I have to let you know that seeing how beautiful you are in that dress has inspired me. I never wear dresses. I hate my legs, my arms are too big, and even though some people call my curvy figure an hourglass, I always feel like my hips look huge in dresses. But you know what? I AM beautiful! My boyfriend and I are going out next weekend to celebrate our 6 month anniversary and Valentine’s Day (we live two hours apart so we don’t get to see each other too often). I’m making it my goal this week to find myself a dress, preferably red, that I feel beautiful and sexy in to wear on our date. Thank you, Jenny, for making me realize that, even with my extra weight and even with all the days where it’s a struggle to take a shower, much less get dressed and apply make-up, I’m still beautiful. Because I’m me. :)

  417. Beautiful pictures! Beautiful spirit outshines that dress by a mile.

    Right now, I am weaning my baby so that I can take the Radiation drugs for my cancer. The Radiation doesn’t scare me, but the look of hurt and anger and sadness on my baby’s face. Yeah. That kills me. I’m also trying my best to forgive myself for skills I do not possess and mistakes that I make (mostly personal) – it is hard, especially when I have a big set-back. When the going gets tough and your “training” fails you just feel worse. Nasty self-hating-spiral. So. I’d love a red dress and would hopefully have the courage to let someone photo me in it.

  418. Gorgeous! You do the red dress proud! I love this story! A true tale of survivor and I delighted reading it! Makes me want to put on my red dress and share! Something about the colour red – brings out so much passion and excitement – I wish every woman could share in your traveling gorgeous red dress!

  419. You are amazing and inspiring. I love this concept so much. My red dress (this year) is going to be posing for [tw] projectunbreakable.tumblr.com – with my face showing.

  420. I have borderline personality disorder and severe depression. I self harm and am covered in rows of scars. They make me feel hideous. And because I’ve gotten so ‘sick’ I have to attend a day program, and there is no beauty in sitting in the back of a classroom telling strangers about your latest crisis.
    For me a red dress would give me the courage to stand proud, sleeveless, and say look at me! These are my lines of triumph.

  421. I can’t even express how awesome I think the Traveling Red Dress is.

    Denise recently posted How they see me.

  422. I was told about your blog by a friend several months ago and can’t stop reading! Your sense of humor is incredibly twisted – right up my alley!!
    So love the traveling red dress. In the last 11 months I have had double mastectomies , and excuse me if I get to personal here, but just 2 days ago I had a 2nd wide excision vulvectomy ( last one was 13 years ago with a complete reconstruction of my vajayjay) due to a nasty thing called VIN, cancer in waiting basically. I’m typing this while I am high on some pretty good pain meds, so if I’m not making any sense here, you’ll understand. My point of all this rambling is, stay strong, try to laugh when you can, and remember, your not alone!!!I

  423. My mind has been playing tricks on me and in it I imagine my cancer is back. Maybe it is PMS…but this made me damn teary because I don’t WANT to wear the Red Dress, but I am sure i will, sooner or later.

    You look so beautiful, Jenny. And dammit, I’m all teary again.

    yo-yo mama recently posted 16 January, 2012 13:23.

  424. The photos are beautiful!
    I left a shorter version of this story on the facebook page too, but my dress has yet to find me.

    Thirteen months ago, I eloped with a man I thought was my soul mate. We eloped because our families have some substance-abusing characters who are prone to outbursts, and we wanted a day that was peaceful and just our own. At the same time, we wanted that community seal, so we planned a family-and-friends wedding for October 2011. Over the last year, we planned our wedding, but also our lives. I quit graduate school in preparation for being a mother and wife (an admittedly dumb move, considering I wasn’t pregnant). We began private dealings with the owners of my beautiful childhood home, who were putting it back on the market, and planned to sell it to us. And we planned a honeymoon in Africa. Our first year of marriage was filled with ups and downs, mistakes on both sides, but seemed relatively normal for a first year of marriage. Hindsight, of course, is 20/20. Then, in the weeks leading up to the family ceremony, my husband began behaving erratically, but insisted everything was normal and fine. He continued to tell me how much he loved me every day. Then, the unthinkable happened. While I was doing some wedding planning, I got an email from my landlord’s wife telling me that she was sorry to hear we had called off the wedding. I thought, “That’s strange … since we’re already married.” I called him immediately, and that’s when he finally came clean. He was leaving. He had no explanation. Whatever had happened, he wasn’t going to fight for us, and I couldn’t convince him to try. He had never indicated that this was a possibility. He was just done. Our wedding was in less than two weeks. I was left jobless, loveless, homeless, humiliated and shocked.
    This week, our lawyers began speaking. I finally feel like I’m working my way to freedom from this mess and his dishonesty. I would like to celebrate that, and prepare for the fight ahead with the red dress. I still have to get my career back on track, get through the divorce, and find out if I could ever love or trust again. For years, I’ve battled depression and anxiety that stems from my own parents’ shocking divorce. Some days I feel like I’m ready for the battle, some days I do not. For me, the red dress = strength.

  425. Jenny, You are a wonderful woman who makes me smile every single day. If you help even one person then you are doing the world so much good, and you’ve help so much more than just one person. I am in love with the red dress and everything it represents but I can’t yet tell myself that I deserve a red dress. My life is hard but no harder than anyone else’s, much less the many wonderful and terrible stories that have been helped by your wonderful dress. I recently married a wonderful man who loves me so much and I am following a dream that I thought I would never be able to follow: I’m currently working on my master’s degree in English. Some days I am the happiest person in the world and for good reason. Some days I feel like Allie, in that I am sad for no reason and am mad at myself for that sadness. Those are the days that I feel ungrateful for wanting a red dress, for wanting to be that indulgent when I don’t deserve it. I haven’t struggled through anything; I’m the luckiest person in the world and I have no damn right to be so sad.

    I’m so proud of all that you do, Jenny. Thank you for the tears and the laughter and the laughter through tears (my favorite emotion – Dolly Parton) that you have given all of us.

    *Smiles*

    Sandy recently posted Chrome Users: Try the WordPress.com Extension.

  426. Wow. I am SO inspired by this…and you look BEAUTIFUL…what a wonderful idea, because while outward beauty is not what is most important, sometimes you need something to make you feel beautiful on the outside in order to remind yourself how beautiful you are on the inside!

    Coco recently posted quick update.

  427. I just hit my eight month being pregnant, and would love an excuse to dress up in something other than boring maternity clothes and feel glamorous again for even a few minutes.

    Barring that, I am a pretty good photographer, and would be willing to help out if someone else needs photos in the DC/Northern Virginia area.

  428. You inspire. You will never be purposeless, Jenny Lawson.

  429. You’re a beautiful, special kind of awesome. Thanks for waking me up today…

  430. I posted earlier, but i just wanted to say this,ive been doing WalkMS for the last 4 yrs. I will do it till I cannot , . I do it in the name of an inspiring woman I once took care of,this year i believe my team will be wearing red dresses for this walk. I would love to spread the word for you this is amazing!!! and inspiring like valerie was to me.So when your red dress moment think of the best way to use it for good of yoursef and maybe a woman or women wo didnt have that chance!

  431. I want this Red Dress so bad…. I’m a 15 year old MtF transgender. I’m battling depression, self-harm issues, and frequent moments of hysteria. I feel out of place in my body, and feel truly like myself whenever I’m wearing some article of woman’s clothing. . I’m also gay.. My school doesn’t have much tolerance, and are verbally abusive :/
    The teachers don’t do anything.. I’ve been suicidal in the past, and have been recently.
    I just want to feel beautiful for once.. People say scars make you stronger, that’s not always true.
    I feel ugly.. Worthless. I want to feel beautiful, like how my soul feels.
    ~Much love, Lennon

    Lennon Austin recently posted Oh hai..

  432. I’m fighting against my father midway through his chemo sessions, my mentally handicapped brother just eloped with a fiancee we never knew existed (and her family is so manipulative its crazy!!) and the fact that I just can’t seem to get ahead no matter what I do. One step forward ends up being 4 steps behind.

    But Jenny, you look so beautiful and despite the turmoil you might feel, your eyes look so calm and serene!

  433. 437
    MotivateFromWithin

    There’s a lot of people who seem to be contributing to the “I wish I was only 20 pounds overweight” that will probably help in the rationalization that’s acceptable (from a health perspective, not looks). Here’s the thing. It’s not. It’s unhealthy, and easily remedied within 3 months.

    All of these self-reassurance posts are the exact opposite of motivation. They will help you keep from meeting whatever goals you may have set for yourself health wise, because you are getting hundreds of “It’s ok, sweetie” affirmations that you don’t need to change.

    Change is simple. Start small. Pick 30 minutes a day that just for you. Walk, Run, Weights, Krav Maga, whatever gets you pumping. But find some you time and make it a must, not a should.

    You’ll see the difference inside and out.

  434. I just bought myself a red ball gown yesterday! And you look absolutely amazing in this; beautiful.

  435. You are beautiful. You are not purposeless. You are so much more than I think you realize!

  436. Mmmmmmm…..I love this post. I’ve been noticing my soft cushy arms lately. Thank you for helping me to see the beauty in them.

    You are lovely in the pictures. You Rock! Thanks for sharing your life with us.

    Cindy recently posted Now I Can Say Hello.

  437. Jenny, you are such an amazing inspiration! Reading your blog helped me get through the hurt of my depression and the subsequent separations from my husband because he couldn’t deal with it. We are finally going strong and supporting each other, and I am the happiest I have ever been. I’ve been off my depression medications for a year now, and while I still have setbacks, your blog helps me to laugh and sometimes cry my way through them. The fact that you go through this and write about it shows amazing strength that you may not believe you have, but I KNOW you do! Thank you.

  438. You are beautiful! And thank you for reminding me that my curves should be celebrated!!!!
    I’ve just come through the first year of my teenage daughter being diagnosed with depression – she and I are both stronger and yet more fragile than we have ever been. She’ll be 16 next Sunday (and reads your blog!) and I would love for both of us to wear the red dress – photos would be an excellent reminder of we both are, especially to each other…..
    God, you inspire the hell out of me!!! Thank you!!!

  439. This is a fabulous story, and idea, and the photos are awesome! I’m self conscious about my weight too, never been the ‘ideal’ or anything. I used to blog about my PTSD and the struggles with it, this makes me want to take that up again. Living seeing you’re ‘different’ at every commercial, every media produced object about how society and the individual is ‘supposed’ to be takes its toll sometimes.

  440. For being SO pretty and SO talented, I can’t even imagine how you could ever be nervous in front of anyone! I love the message you send about continued self growth while taking time to appreciate who you are.

    Sabrina recently posted Lladro figures stir emotions while reminiscing.

  441. This moved me in all sorts of ways.

    I’m not saying this in a negative way, but I’m having trouble phrasing it. I’m not trying to scold, even if it sounds like this, or asking for pity. I just kind of want this experience to have been a thing that I can share with other people in a positive way.

    Love your boobs. Love the hell out of them. Love the hell out of everything else while you’re at it.

    I’m BRCA2 positive, and last year went through a mastectomy and implant reconstruction, and the DDs I once sported are gone forever and replaced by something more of a C+. Sadly, I’m not at the point yet where I can take this as a life lesson and start loving all the other parts of me that I think aren’t good enough, but I’m hoping to get there some day.

    (sidenote: I’ve often read posts of yours and thought that you, of every blog I read, might appreciate this. Pre-surgery, I got a call from a nervous post-doc who wanted to ask me to donate my breasts to science once they were removed. So it’s still possible, someone, somewhere, is doing science to my ex-boobs)

    I haven’t found my red dress yet, but I hope that someday, literal or metaphorical, it’ll come. And things like this project make me all smiley-weepy and believe that it might, that this new body will feel like the sort of thing that can wear a red dress.

  442. You look gorgeous. You have a beautiful smile and brown eyes! I too love red , it makes me feel better. Even though I’ m over 50, 50 lbs. overweight, it lightens my load, physically& mentally. I friend just sent me your blog. I have to thank her & FB my friends about it. And thank you. I see your beautiful on the outside & after reading this, on the inside.

  443. My red dress isn’t red. I’ve called it ‘leopard print’ more times than I can count, but when I tried it on this morning (it finally fits!!), I realized it’s technically tiger-striped. With gold flecks. It’s HEINOUS. Really, truly, hideously, awesomely UGLY. A year ago I couldn’t have pulled it over my head. Heck, six months ago I would’ve looked like a sausage about to burst from its casing. But now the 3/4 sleeves are smooth, the fitted waist makes me look super curvy, and my boobs – oh, dear Lord – my boobs are reaching for the sky in this dress. So I wore it around the house with the sluttiest shoes I own, and rest assured I OWNED that ugly fucking dress.

  444. You are so beautiful!

    I looked at your pictures before I read the post, and then when I read your remarks about yourself, I wanted to give you a gentle shake and a big hug. You are so beautiful, Jenny, and I want you to know that about yourself! Inside and out.

    Wear the hell out of your gorgeous, amazing, beautiful self.

  445. Wow it took a long time to scroll to the bottom of these comments on my phone. :) I dont want a dress… I can get one myself and add it to the pack. I just wanted to say that 40 is beautiful. I am turning 40 this year and have had silver in my hair for a decade. I have stretch marks and padding. I would never go back. I love having the confidence and knowledge that came from the years it took to own myself. I wouldn’t give that over for anything. I would never trade the freedom of “like me or leave me” 40 for the insecurity of my younger years. We know who we are and we believe in us whether anyone else does or not. Its liberating.

  446. Jenny, you are absolutely gorgeous, inside and out. If you only knew how many times I’ve been so sucked into depression and you are the only thing keeping me smiling, you’d be amazed with yourself. Thank you for the inspiration.

    Kendahl recently posted I'm on the crazy train. As if you didn't already know that..

  447. I am so amazed by everything you do, Ms. Bloggess. I have been reading your posts here (and stalking your other work) for about a year now, but never felt like I had much to contribute. Today though, your pictures made me stop and stare. I am currently a first year law student at a great law school, but unlike my peers, I do not feel like I fit where I am. I have 2 beautiful kids and a great husband, but a sick feeling that I am just pretending. My own insecurities and self-doubt keep telling me that I am not half of what I need to be to make it here. I have battled depression for so many years and had fooled myself into thinking that I had beat it, but now, in this overly competitive atmosphere, I am gripped by its power again. I don’t have time to take care of myself the way I should, I have put on 50 pounds in the last few years because of various health/emotional issues, and do not see myself when I look in the mirror. Actually, I see the woman I always thought I was: fat, ugly, and ordinary. All the things I wish I was better than.

    You are an inspiration. Someday I hope I have the courage to speak my truth the way you do and to see the beauty in my own struggles. Thank you for your humor, your honesty, and your everpresent bad-assery.

  448. Jenny you are so inspiring (and beautiful)! I would love a chance to wear the red dress. I think I’d be a size 16 (I don’t actually own ANY dresses since I feel I’m much too heavy to wear one). I have struggled with adjusting to life with fibromyalgia while raising four kids ages 15-5. Some days are good and some days totally suck. I look forward to your posts to keep my spirits up. Thank you so much for being YOU!

  449. 453
    HeatherWhoLovesTheBloggess

    Bodacious and bootylicious!! You rock it, girl.

  450. You are awesome and your existence makes me happy.

  451. my red dress is my wife, keeps me grounded, keeps my feet on the ground and keeps me sane (only occasionally driving me nuts)

    Tom Stronach recently posted Book Review - Final Assault by Stephen Ames Berry.

  452. You’re gorgeous, and your red dress stories have really hit a nerve with me. What I’m battling/celebrating/surviving? Well, I’m on the wrong side of 40 and finding it hard to start seeing myself in an older role…I don’t want to stop being fun and carefree! But mostly I had a health issue and depression that caused massive weight gain. It got so ugly I was unrecognizable and hardly able to walk. Last year I started getting it together and lost 81 pounds – the hard way. No surgery, no diet pills. I still have more to go to get to a normal size. But already I feel so good, so much prettier and so ready to enjoy my life again! I’m still fat, but damn it, I am not the sum of my fat cells! And furthermore, I’m getting that all under control and taking back my life. I’m healthier and happier than I’ve been in years!

    So I’m working hard on seeing myself not as old, fat and unlovable to being the age I oughta be (I’m not sure what that is. But it ain’t 42!), a normal size, and fan-freaking-tastic. I refuse to give in to depression or any other factor that wants to make me feel less than fabulous. So if you choose to share the red dress with me, I’ll see a photographer and get the pictures taken to share. I look back on a photo session I had in my early thirties – when I *thought* I was too fat – and realize how beautiful I was. This time, I will own it and not let the remaining pounds distract me from the fact that I’ve still got it, and I oughta flaunt it!

    Those words are harder to say than you know – self-esteem issues are a bitch!

  453. Nice rack, Jenny! Yowza! ;)

    Love the red dress, and just my size! Might have to check that link to purchase my own. I would wear *the hell* out of it to the grocery store in the middle of the day to celebrate my life as a stay-at-home wife and mom, but what I REALLY want to do is get my Mom into one! Permanently disabled, with crippling RA and Lupus, she *still* goes to work everyday, at 62 years old. Never mind all the years she busted her butt at a physically-challenging job to take care of her two kids and (not always successful) self-employed husband. Still kickin’. She’s a friggin’ powerhouse, that woman.

    Thanks for being there, Jenny. I’m glad I get to know you.

  454. Your photos are truly beautiful. I understand the feelings of being lost, without purpose. I’ve just had my 5th abdominal surgery in 15 years, and I’m not only feeling lost, without purpose but also? HIDEOUS with my newest scar bisecting my overly-large abdomen. The staples are awful but looking beyond them, I see the scar I’ll always wear – and I am embarrassed. and it sucks. But it’s not cancer. It’s not anything that couldn’t be fixed. So I have to remind myself of that and REMEMBER that there are those around me SO much worse off, suffering so much more. Maybe I will.

  455. you are BEAUTIFUL!!! Beyonce’s mom is even more gorgeous that I’d pictured her:)
    Gave my friend a Beyonce whom she named Chaz……you know, identify issues – Beyonce really IS a male I believe….
    Anyway, would love to participate in the Red Dress Project. Fighting severe depression, bi-polar disease and a whole host of other issues too numerous to mention. But then, we’re all fighting something:( Some more than others…..

  456. Stunning. Inside and out :D <3

    GP recently posted In which spring fever makes an early appearance….

  457. 461
    Elizabeth Larlham Oala

    You are absolutely gorgeous! And this is absolutely amazing!
    I’m not fighting anything as dramatic as cancer, or AIDS, but for the last 3 years I have been fighting a nasty bug called C. Diff, and for the first 1.5 years we had no idea what it was. I spent that first 1.5 years going from hospitals, to doctors, to two different universities, all the while being told I had everything from withdrawl (this all started after a bout of Menengitis/Encephalitis) to Narcotic Bowel Syndrome (I have chronic back and neck problems) to being a hypochondriac/melingerer. Finally, my GP’s NA figured it out. Now, it took another 6 months to get rid of, and because I’d had it so long, undiagnosed, it was now considered chronic. I would be taking a risk any time I took antibiotics, and I would never be able to be around someone who had it, especially if they were in a hospital or nursing home.
    My mother was diagnosed with this the week after Labor Day, she then went into a nursing home until she passed away December 18, 2010. I was never allowed to visit her because of it, and it broke my heart.

    Now, I’m battling it again,I just got out of the hospital last Tuesday. They tell me, this time it’ll be months before I’m done with the treatment.
    However, it’s never been caught this early before, and that truly gives me hope! =) I’m hoping that even though the treatment will be longer, that because it was caught earlier it won’t ravage my body as badly (I lost 60+ lbs), and take me away from my family. I hope I can spread knowledge about this nasty infection, and keep others from getting it. (Take probiotics the day AFTER you stop ANY antibiotic for a good two weeks, EVERY time) I hope I can finally get my house back into some kind of order after it was decimated by my being unable to function for two years (we’ll see.;) Mostly, I just have hope!

  458. You look gorgeous! I love this idea. I don’t remember the last time I tried to look decent, nevermind beautiful! My son just turned10 months and is doing amazing, which is a miracle…since he suffered a stroke on the day he was born. I’ve been so focused on his therapy (I’m an occupational therapist) that I barely get to take breaks. I also suffer from fibromyalgia…so it isn’t easy. I’m inspired to do a red dress! Yeah!

  459. My God, you’re gorgeous! x

  460. Jenny, I understand that for you that 20 pounds is as devastating as my extra 100. And that now that I can look back on 50, I can tell you not to fear 40. It’s fabulous. 50 is even better. (although I still *feel* 35) But mostly, I wanted to say, aside from your inner beauty, your amazing talent, your shining self, you are *physically* so beautiful, I would give a lot to look like you. Exactly like you. You are lovely. On the outside. Too.

  461. You look absolutely stunning in these photos, that red dress was was lucky to modeled by you! I hope to someday have the courage to “wear the red dress” and show the world and myself that I am still me under all the labels I wear for everyone else!

  462. I love this idea. I am currently going through therapy to deal with anxiety, and to help change behaviors I have learned from a life time of learned helplessness (as a result of a boarder line abusive upbringing). I am still working on my degree, despite being older than most in college simply because of these thought patterns that until recently were not fully identified, and as a result could not be changed. I am hoping to finish my degree soon and start on the next chapter of my life.

    I love that the dress acts as a way to remind yourself of your strength and power, and help you keep working towards your goals.

    Jayme recently posted Nail Polish Collection: Purples.

  463. I would love to borrow the dress. I need a red dress in my life and the chance for my daughters to wear it as well.
    I lost my husband, their Daddy last year. Feb 11th to be exact. He died in my arms on our porch. I tried CPR. I begged God to let him come back. My youngest 2 girls saw their Daddy being loaded on the ambulance. Their friends, saw their father being loaded in to the ambulance.
    This past year has been beyond painful. There are days that we can just drag ourselves out of our beds and pretend we can get through the day. Someday we can’t and we go back to bed. We are told time heals, but I call Bullshit. Time does not heal. All it does is pass. We are ‘moving forward’ it is not easy. I personally dont know what I would do without my children. They are the reason I get up everyday and try to heal. Try to set a good healthy example for my children.
    My girls are young adults. They would fit in the dress with some adjustments. I would LOVE to have the chance to have pictures of us in that dress. It would represent who we were, who we have to become and who we miss so very very much.

  464. This is a truly remarkable inspiration. As I sit here my mind is already whirling with the possibilities of re-using my black wedding gown for a similar photo shoot in the future!!

    Terri Cook recently posted Another Week Has Flown By....

  465. I’m returning to the house I grew up in this weekend. To help my mother, the woman whom I allowed to verbally, emotionally, and occasionally physically abuse me for 20years, bury my grandfather. The man who taught her how.

    And then I’ll return home. To the man who helped me escape, and the kids we’ve vowed not to repeat the cycle with. And start the process of healing. Again.

    If there’s a red dress left? My self-esteem would love just 5minutes in it. That’s all.

  466. You look stunning, but then you always do.

    I’m pretty sure that there are people out there who need and deserve a red dress more than I do, but I’m going to tell you my story any way. I was 16 when I was diagnosed with Long QT syndrome, and over the course of months we figured out that the traditional medications weren’t working, so they had to switch me to beta blockers with the oh-so-pleasant side effect of weight gain. Over the period of two months I gained 60 pounds and my boyfriend dumped me because I was not the girl he started dating (to be fair to him, this is entirely true and in more ways than weight gain).

    As a teenager already struggling to define myself, and who already had self-esteem issues this was devastating. Five years later I still have trouble seeing myself as a beautiful woman, but I’ve learned (mostly) how to ignore the people judging my appearance who have no idea what I’ve gone through. And most of the time I appreciate my body, even if I cannot really say I love it.

    I think, though, that I could use a little bit of the magic your dresses are carrying around

  467. You are absolutely wonderful and uplifting.

  468. Jenny, you are beautiful. The world is a better place because of you.

  469. 474
    Stefanie Hale

    You are a gorgeous woman! Sometimes it is hard to see within ourselves and it takes a while but it’s so worth it when you get there. I am currently fighting being a single mom recently divorced with two lovely and beautiful boys by my side (5 and 3). I am trying to keep my head above water, see myself for who I am…a beautiful, intelligent, sexy women…it’s so hard some days! So..I would love a red dress….if nothing else to show myself that I am worth it and beautiful! Keep up the good work lovely lady!

  470. I love you to pieces right now. You made me cry because I could relate so much to the stuff you wrote about how you feel about yourself. I’m going to look for a dress and I know who needs it. And I have a friend I’d love to give the dress in this post too. She’s built very much like you. She and I are both caregivers for our wounded veteran husbands that suffer from PTSD and also mothers to young children so we perpetually come last. Either way, this is going to happen!

  471. 476
    Not Supermom

    Jenny, your beauty and grace are indescribable. I admire you so very much.

    My every day is a battle. We battle against learning disabilities, we battle with metabolic disorders. We battle auto-immune disease that refuses to reveal its name. We battle against depression and anxiety. Every day I get up, a piece of me wonders if this is it, this is the day that the world will change. Every day I struggle to maintain hope in the face of long-term, incurable disease. Some day hope is elusive.

    You give me hope on those bad days, Jenny, and you bring me laughter when I can’t bear the darkness any longer. This is a gift that I’ll never be able to repay you. Thank you so much, for providing that little bit of hope, that one bit of saving grace, when I need it most.

    Some day, I’ll wear a red dress. I’ll dance, and sing, and shout, and own it, and be beautiful, Jenny. Some day. I hope it’s soon.

  472. I know my chances of winning a shot of that red dress and photo session are slim-to-none, but that self-doubt is what’s making me give it a shot.
    A few weeks ago when you posted that incredibly touching post and the Red Dress Revival started I was moved to write about my own struggles with depression and bulimia. It was while I typed that I came to the realization that my 4 month-old daughter had saved my life.
    It’s a bit long and you may not want to read it -I understand, but I feel that the more I share my story the more I am acknowledging what I have overcome.
    http://thageekymomma.blogspot.com/2012/01/how-my-daughter-has-saved-my-life.html

  473. You should probably know that your daughter thinks you’re absolutely, perfectly, exactly as you should be. Just ask her.

  474. I think you look beautiful in the newest incarnation of your red dress!

    My proverbial red dress is my scarlet red 500cc Motorcycle. I waited 28 years to learn how to ride, it gives me confidence and courage to learn new things. It also happens to be the best mental therapy for me, when I ride all of my worries and freakfesting goes away, I feel euphoria and peace. I also get that sought after time for me. I know it is dangerous, but I am tired of living my life in a paper bag of fear, which I have done for so long. I was watching everyone else living and was tired of thinking “if only” now I can say I did! Thank you Bloggess for being beautiful, for encouraging everyone to ‘be’ who they were meant to be.

    Dar recently posted Homemade Eggs Benny ~ Princess Scooterpie style.

  475. I turn 30 on Tuesday and think I need to celebrate in a red dress!!!!!

  476. You are absolutely gorgeous! I love the red dress… I have something along the same lines, but instead of a dress, I have crowns. Yes, plural. We’re friends on FB, you should go check them out. Nothing feels as good as wearing a fucking blinged out crown while folding laundry or floating the river…

  477. This is one of your best posts ever. You’re beautiful. we all feel likethis some times, but you put it into words for us. Thank you. But you made me cry..alone…in my room. Not nice.

    Kelly Dear recently posted I used to read this blog, but she stopped writing letters..

  478. Jenny, you’re beautiful. Don’t ever let anyone tell you otherwise.

    Sergeant Van recently posted Service Members Who Don’t Serve.

  479. Your boobs are beautiful, as is the rest of you. I love this project with my whole heart.

    I am having a long-awaited kidney transplant in February and am hoping that it will have me feeling well enough to wear a red dress soon thereafter…. Kidney failure is an asshole.

    RuthWells recently posted Read Any Good Books Lately?.

  480. You are GORGEOUS!

  481. This inspires me to think better of myself and to go in search of my own red dress. Thank you thank you thank you!

    Jean recently posted Good Intentions and All That.

  482. 487
    Michelle Sneller

    This post brings tears to my eyes.. Thank you Jenny for being YOU. You are awesome, have a huge heart & you bring healing to myself and other women. I hope we do the same for you! XOXO Jenny!

  483. This post totally rocked. YOU totally rock. As a person, as a model, as a mom, as a red-dress wearer. You are so much more beautiful – on the inside and on the outside – than you will know. And you are so brave, because you say out loud so many of the things that many of us think but never have the courage to say, let alone post on a blog…
    The Traveling Red Dress is such a fantastic idea. I have a few goals of my own, and once I reach them, I vow to purchase something that symbolizes the red dress for myself – I’m very fond of gorgeous but hopelessly impractical shoes, myself – wear the hell out of it/them, and then either contribute it/them to the Traveling Red Dress project, or purchase something else that is equally fabulous to contribute towards it!
    Thank you, Jennifer Lawson. You really are amazing.

  484. You are absolutely lovely. Beautiful inside and out. :) Thanks for being such an inspiration!

  485. 490
    Stacey Whitely

    Hello,
    First I want to thak you, You have inspired me to see the joy through the haze of anxiety. I have laughed with and cried for you since… well Beyonce :)

    For the last 5 years I have had this horrible case of anxity that makes me afraid to drive, allow my 10 yr old daughter out of my sight for very long, that The cancer I had in my teens will come back, and sometime I just dont want toget out of bed or leave the house. This is my life…. full of fear and anxiety pills. I have love and support from my husband and daughter but no one really understands what is always running through my head. I have heard former friends make comments like she is just faking it or I think she just wants the xanex.. This is a horrible illness that requires you to spend 20 mins explaining to your DR that no you are not a druggie you really have to take xanex to get through the day. It is truely embarassing.

    I would love to get the red dress and spend a day in a graveyard in Savannah dancing with the tombstones or at the beach here in Jacksonville getting sandy and enjoying the freedom and joy I see on the faces of everyone pictured wearing any of the beautiful red dresses. I want to be spontanious and silly for a day. So yes I would love to get the red dress and forget the fear.
    I hope to see the red dress package on my doorstep one day but until then I will be reading you blog so that I can laugh and cry with you some more..
    Many blessings to you and yours!

    xoxo
    Stacey

  486. Thanks again for these entries. I have my own physical and emotional scars that I deal with. I’m struggling to give myself permission to be myself. I tried to be who I am in a previous relationship and was told “You’re not funny”, “Would you stop acting stupid”, and other demeaning comments that destroyed my already low self-esteem. Since this marriage ended, I have been blessed to find a woman who accepts me for who I am; scars, spare tire around the gut, and all.

    I am also trying to realize that it is important to be comfortable with the skin you’re in. You say that you are 20 pounds overweight, but see 40. I know this very well. I guess you could say I am of average weight, but I see every “flaw”. I’ve been trying to accept the lyrics of Sixx A.M.’s “Skin”. It has such a great message that many people can use.

    I’ve been hoping that I give my own daughters a sense of their own beauty. I am developing my own worry lines with fears that they will become slaves to what some fool in New York or Hollywood tells them about beauty. Always hold your children and tell them they are beautiful. They will hopefully take this message with them in their lives.

  487. A beautiful reminder. How dare I be less than me?

    Jessica DeMink-Carthew recently posted Super Easy Meatless Monday: Black olive, tomato & parmesan pasta.

  488. You are gorgeous. that is all.

  489. In the past two years I have lost my house, my brother, my aunt, my cousin, my best friend, my dog, 3 cats and almost my husband (who is now a cancer survivor). I am about to turn 52 and decided to let go of fear. I am more than 50# overweight, flabby and pale but I put on my bright pink paisley bathing suit and I am learning to swim! An apt lesson for this phase of my life. The past two years didn’t sink me, so how can a pool full of water?
    I would love to be part of the Red Dress project, and am already thinking of other women to pass it to.
    Thanks for sharing your life with us…

  490. You look gorgeous, and any self-consciousness you are feeling does not come through in these pics. You look pretty, confident, and like you could take on the world.

    Jenny recently posted Portobello and Brussels Sprouts Wontons.

  491. So gorgeous. So brave and lovely and intensely beauty filled and radiant. This makes me so immensely, undeniably, furiously happy that I’m crying into my keyboard.

    You inspire me. You inspire the multitudes of readers that you touch.

    THANK YOU.

  492. You are so gorgeous! Thanks for the reminder that joy is worth it!

  493. I used to have a firey red spark. but it died several years ago. due to a severly broken heart and then a divorce. and then the weariness of keeping it all together for my kids…. and now I am about to turn 49 and I’m sick of this feeling. I can’t bear to look at myself in the mirror and I am so tired of my gravity. I want myself back. I want my red spark. I am hoping that a red dress will help to ignite me again. I want to put it on and run through the field behind my house until I collapse….and feel my gravity disinegrate. Then I want to put the dress on my sister. and then my mom. and then there will be champagne. and the lighting of sky lanterns. and, hopefully, some bright, burning red sparks.

  494. You are beautiful-battle wounds and all. That is what makes us beautiful. If we don’t have them, we look plastic…
    I would like to nominate my daughter Jenny (Great name, huh?) for one of the dresses. She is 16. She is my middle child and is my only girl and the child ‘that gets all the bad stuff’. After out growing a seizure disorder that started in 4th grade and lasted until 8th grade she had to have a breast reduction at 15 and is finally starting to see herself as pretty (at times). So you see, she started early with her battle wounds? And I fear she may have inherited the breast cancer gene from me and will have to do it all again one day. But she handles it all because she is strong…So this is something that she could wear to one of her dances and really look amazing in-although I think she always does.
    Thanks for considering her, Jenny! Keep posting. You make me laugh and cry-sometimes at the same time!

  495. Gosh you’re pretty. and I love your dress. but what I really want to know is – did your hair grow back in curly after the chemo meds and if so – how freakin long did it take to come in straight? I can accept the color – even enjoy it but the curls! OMG the curls. make them stop. On a side note I have embraced your philosophy of living furiously happy. I DO scare people sometimes but not so worried about that anymore.

    (My hair just thinned so it grew back in patches. It grew back grey and straightish. ~ Jenny)

  496. p.s. reading all these amazing comments. There are so many of us out there. So many that hate ourselves, that have broken hearts and hopeless days. Why is this?! Maybe now we will start a red dress army and attack all those voices in our heads. Thank you so much, Jenny. You will be our beautiful general.

  497. You’re gorgeous! The dress is quite becoming on you and I have no idea where you got the idea that your hair was mousey. If I saw you out and about I’d be forced to stop and stare.

  498. You’re the DIVA in that dress. Just gorgeous!

  499. you are gorgeous

  500. Abstolutely awesome !

  501. I absolutely love the pictures! Especially the last one. It really tells a story.

    I’ve read your blog for over a year, often wanted to leave a comment, but I’m not really a verbal person and always ended up deleting my reply without submitting it. I’ve often thought about the traveling red dress, and I always knew exactly what I wanted to do with it.

    I don’t really feel like I did anything to deserve a special red dress for me. Today, there is one person that I would like to honor with that red dress and that’s my sister-in-law.
    About 9 years ago my brother was diagnosed with a spinal cord tumor. Seeing as it is located in a sensitive area they decided to operate to get a correct diagnosis, but they wouldn’t really do anything to treat it as the risk outweighed the possible results.

    Anyways, years passed and the just kept monitoring him and meanwhile life moved on. He graduated, started working, got married, his wife got pregnant…

    During that first pregnancy it was time for one of his 6monthly checkups and they were informed he needed to have surgery again (which basicly means a months hospitals stay 2 hours from where we live, infections, learning to walk again which leads to frustration which leads to horrible moods for close family). Well let’s say that they couldn’t really focus on the pregnancy anymore.
    My sister in law did a wonderful job standing by him while caring for their then 2 month old daughter. Having her by his side made his fight ‘easier’. My brother is not the only one fighting/surviving. Witnessing someone you love go through something like that is definately not easy, but she showed great strength during these times.

    A couple of months passed and he got back to work, they resumed life. About 18 later, a 2nd pregnancy was announced, we were all happy that this time they would be able to enjoy it and purely focus on this baby and their family. However my brother’s 6month checkup revealed that this wasn’t going to be the case.
    Tomorrow he will start chemo. He might be just fine and not suffer from any of the side effects and finally get rid of the damn tumor. But I want her to know how thankful I am for her strength, and how much I appreciate what she did. I know she will be just as strong as the first time around.
    Spouces of people with any kind of illness are just as deserving of a red dress as they are batteling just as hard as the person fighting the disease.

    ps: I have to add, I know an actuall red dress won’t work for her. I still have to find her personal red dress. But typing this felt like some kind of therapy for all that is happening at the moment. My parents always told us that it was not our story to tell our environment, that it should be my brother’s choice. I am the youngest of 5 siblings and am the only one still living at home. This is a place where you just don’t bring up the subject as you can see the hurt it causes my parents just thinking about it.

  502. You are an inspiration! I am not posting for me (although I would be honored and ECSTATIC to wear it in celebration of overcoming so much in my life), but for my co-workers.

    I work for the mental health branch of a community service board. The handful of women with whom I work have struggles of their own but work tirelessly to help their clients not just succeed, but thrive. These women graciously serve clients who are in poverty, seriously mentally ill and rarely have their own support systems – and do so without financial reward or acknowledgement of their tenacity and sacrifice.

    Jenny, these women deserve celebration. They deserve to feel beautiful and alive. They deserve to feel powerful. They need to be reminded that there is magic in the world. A couple of the ladies wear sizes over 20 (26, I think) but they deserve this as much as the others. If I could afford to buy a red dress for them to share, I would.

  503. Can I just say Holy Bejezus woman?! You’re amazing and inspiring and gorgeous and so many other adjectives that I’ll just be up front and honest and say your my personal girl crush. Thank you for reminding me that my reflection is more than just my image, an image that I have spent too much time thinking wasn’t pretty because I’m a size 18 in a size 2 world. So as soon as there’s some extra cash in the bank, I’m going shopping for my own red dress cause damnit, I deserve it!

  504. WOW!!!! I came to your site to read about the traveling red dress, and found a whole lot more!!! First of all, you ARE gorgeous in those pictures! Secondly, you’re going to have a hard time deciding who gets a red dress… By reading the responses to your red dress page, I think I have found a kindred spirit…. (s) I am looking forward to checking out the rest of your blog. I saw myself in some of these stories, and it would be nice to have people to share my experiences with. So, I will bookmark your page, and I`ll be back real soon! In advance, thank you for all the help you have apparently given to many people who need it.

  505. Your pictures are gorgeous!

  506. You are a truly beautiful woman. don’t ever forget that. I bet if you asked Victor he’d tell you how lucky he is to have you

    Steve recently posted Proper doneness for meat.

  507. 513
    Gregg Barnes

    Hi Blogess. I love what is happening, what you started, with this dress. That may sound odd coming from a man. But in all honesty, I think the way woman are told their bodies are supposed to be can really screw with your head. Its nice to something that makes a woman feel better about herself. So far, all the pictures I’ve seen of the woman, they looked fantastic! And I hope it helped to life their spirits. Also, I have to say, you, are an exceptionally beautiful woman. Of course you look great in the dress! I love your blog! Its well written. I too hope your husband knos how lucky he is. I look forward to more of your blogs, and more of the Red Dress.

  508. Look at you! Those photos are absolutely beautiful and your wonderful self comes shining through in all of them, but especially the last one in the post. I wish I could feel as confident as you look.

  509. Blogess you look wonderful. Victor is a lucky man. Random acts of kindness, indeed, you have done more than most.

    Derek

  510. Oh Jenny, you look absolutely stark, raving, beautiful! Love these photos.

    elz recently posted Friday Favorites-Retail Therapy.

  511. You are gorgeous.

    The Laundress recently posted My Artist.

  512. Totally just got chills reading this….AWESOME! P.S. You look beautiful….

  513. IF I was a lesbian, I would totally tap that! BEAUTIFUL!!!!

  514. Jenny, you are beautiful inside and out. I love that you’re funny and honest, but most of all, I love that you just ARE. The world is a better place with you in it, scars and all. It’s taken me a long time to realize that for myself; I have the emotional and phsyical scars to prove how long and how hard it was to learn that lesson. Your Red Dress Project will help so many people see their own beauty and worth much sooner.

    Keep on fighting the fight, Jenny. And on the days when you’re curled in a ball under your table trying to hide from the world or your own personal demons, remember that you’re not alone. I’m under that table with you, along with every single other person you’ve helped by laying your wounds bare for us to see.

  515. You are so beautiful. And so brave. The bravery makes you even more beautiful. Thank you.

  516. I think you are stunning but not just because of the outside package. If fact, I think it is what you share with us from the inside that makes you irreplacable. I too suffer from depression and when you let us see your beautiful inside with all of it’s determination you make me a little less ashamed. So, wear that damn dress out to the grocery store because not everyone takes the time to see the beautiful you on the inside but make damn sure they see the beautiful you on the outside!
    Conny from Red Deer, Alberta

  517. You look simply beautiful!

  518. 524
    Ritchiewoman

    I was reading this entry on my iPad when my husband peered over my shoulder and said, “Wow. Who’s that?” I responded with “Knock, knock motherfucker,” which is how he knows you. He then says, “Nice rack.” No sweeter words have ever been spoken.

  519. LOVE these photographs! And, of course, your comments.
    And I have to love the “Joy is always worth it” quote, mainly because my name is Joy! :)

    Joy Ribisi recently posted Etsy On Sale Starts Now.

  520. I can only hope that, someday, I will feel (insert adjective) enough to wear a red dress, much less be photographed in one. As I am now, depression has left me so empty, so tired, so void that I can barely muster a simple descriptive part of speech. Keep those red dresses traveling. I may get to wear one one day.

    Elizabeth recently posted Not About Books..

  521. You look stunningly beautiful, no need to feel bad or worry. Just radiantly beautiful! :)

  522. LOVE the red dress idea! I have had much of the same path, I have taken the chemo drugs for RA, I can see 50 and many parts of me are soft and wobbly… I have also watched the love of my life battling lung cancer with grace, courage and dignity. This has scarred me more than anything I have ever had to suffer and there are days when I weep at his resolve. The red dress to me would represent hope and a temporary escape from the realities of this life. Such a lovely life-affirming idea.

  523. “And I remember to take a deep breath and realize that’s good enough.” – I’m going to remember to start telling myself this.

  524. 530
    Not Supermom

    @Ritchiewoman – that might possibly be the best comment I’ve ever read. My husband, too, knows Jenny as “Knock Knock motherfucker.” Perhaps they should start a club. <3

  525. Thank you for being you.. You make me realize that little things in life can make such a huge difference.. I love that you can make me smile or cry with the power of your words.. Thank you for being inspiring, and inspiring me to be a better woman.. Your pictures are truly magical..

  526. You are absolutely amazing! I am one of the many who follow you on twitter, but as my account is private you’d never see me tweeting you unless you followed. I just think you are an absolute inspiration to thousands of women. And, while I may have missed the point, one day when my stomach and arms aren’t so god-damned enormous, I will wear a red dress like that and I will rock the frock like you do!

    Beautiful.

  527. The dress looks amazing on you! You are beautiful inside and out!

    I’m celebrating my first year as a single mama. Its a struggle but its worth it. I left an abusive relationship and fought hard for two years to gain custody of my two daughters after he accused me of everything under the sun. Now that I’m free I realize that I’m such a better person than he let me believe and I have my two amazing beautiful little girls to show for it (Daughters are 5 and 3) I’d love to dress up and dress up my littles and take some amazing glam shots with them to hang all over the house and remind us everyday that together we can conquer anything that is put in front of us!

  528. Pretty beyond all reason, and that’s the truth.

  529. You are beautiful, inside and out, and this project is lovely. So lovely.

  530. I can totally relate to the feeling older. I turned 30 this year and a lot of stuff has happened over the past two years that have made me re-evaulate my choices, thoughts, friends, and marriage. I recently survived my second full- blown manic episode after being suicidal for months. I am surprised that I am still here today after the rollar-coaster that I have been between changing doctors, medication, and career paths. With that said, I feel like I’m finally starting to find peace. I also know that no matter how much I try to push my husband away that he loves me enough to stay in our marriage no matter how hard things get. And I know that my friends are truly like my second family. And even though I am the heaviest I’ve ever been, (size 14) I’m still comfortable in my own skin. So, I guess what I want to say is that despite it all, I’m proud to still be around and I hope to be around for a long time. P.S. I look forward to checking out more of your blog, but I promise not to be a comment whore :)

  531. I have been wanting to do this so badly. I’m the mother of 3 special needs kids. My husband suffers from severe depression and even in the best of times holds a level of sadness about him that I have to combat daily. Even on the days that I myself feel the tugging weight of depression and responsibility. I can’t work, even though I want to (and our bank account needs me to), because if I do we lose insurance vital to our ability to afford medications for my two Cystic Fibrosis kids. Five years ago I had an emergency hysterectomy and since then my body has changed so that I hardly recognize myself. I very rarely feel beautiful and even though I’m currently attempting to diet and get back in shape, I don’t like myself very much. Every day there is a struggle of some kind, whether it’s kids, husband, insurance battles or money problems. I would give anything to feel beautiful, feel like a movie star, just for a day (and for the wonderful local photog Casey/MooshinIndy to capture it on her magic camera).

    Sarah recently posted Fourteen.

  532. In the middle of my depression i felt like taking my own life was the only solution.

    one of my closest friends, even with her busy schedule, made sure to call or text every day, and got her kids involved in cheering me up. one of the last things she begged to me was to check in with her before i check out of life.

    i cannot thank her enough for never giving up on me. she is one of the only people to constantly tell me complements… if i wasn’t a broke college student, i’d send her a red dress.

    thanks for this beautiful post, my dear. you are gorgeous.

    (every day, i listen to my heart… I AM NEVER ALONE)

  533. Wow. You are amazing and stunning and so many, many layers of awesome.

  534. Jenny you are soooo gorgeous! These pics are amazeballs. I cant see any of the flaws you see, just a beautiful woman with smoldering eyes.

    And i cant believe how cheap that awesome dress is!

  535. Jenny,

    You are beyond inspiring and you’re totally fucking awesome. Now, why I need a red dress?
    I’m not suffering from any physical ailments or anything like that, but my life has been sucked into a vortex of fuckedupedness lately and I could use something bright to remind me that I’m still a part of this world. Yeah, I’m the girl who had to move back home with her parents at 31 after my invisible screenwriting career confirmed itself as being invisible. No money, no boyfriend, no job, old friends occupied with real things like mortgages and babies. I mean there’s little record of my existence in the past year. So why did I think I could be a writer again? I don’t know, but I still think I can, even though everyone looks at me like I’ve lost my mind. I guess I’ve come to accept that failure is a part of it. So I’m heading back to L.A. in two weeks, starting my own small production company (Jackass & Punkass Productions) and I’m going to find a job despite the shitty economy and still write on the side. But I’d be totally awesome to make this new start in a red dress…if ya get my drift.:)

    You’re awesome!

  536. I am uncommonly small. And wearing a red gown scares me. And I saw one in the window of a resale shop today that I just might go back for. Because I don’t think any of the traveling gowns will be my size, but this one looked like it was.

    Must be brave.

  537. I wonder if I could find a red skin suit to wear speed skating. Maybe even in a meet that I’ve so far declined to do because I think I will embarrass myself in front an arena full of people and yet I still want to because of the brave people I’ve seen in my (still new) journey to learn this sport.

    Sharon recently posted Like A Turtle But On Sharp Blades.

  538. 544
    Cindy Dashnaw

    Lost my last remaining parent last January. Thyroid cancer this January. Kids (teens) don’t like or need us, they’re saying, which depresses the hell out of me. 50 and still too damn worried about what everyone else thinks. Waist far too large for my almost-5-foot and otherwise thin body, and I can’t even imagine putting on a red dress right now!

  539. It’s amazing what the color red can do! I don’t have a red dress, but I bought myself a ridiculous red purse about a year ago. Then this fall I got red rain boots. I wear the hell out of them both and get compliments when I do. I will now look at them differently. The purse especially. It was one of those things I got for myself because I decided that I was worth it that one day. I will try to remember that more often.

    Amanda recently posted Knowledge is Power – IEPs.

  540. You look truly amazing!

    I really appreciate what you wrote about being beautiful because of who you are. I have five kids ages 8 and younger. I surely don’t look as good as I did on my wedding day. All of those pregnancies have taken a toll. I’ve been feeling really unhappy with how my body looks and feels these days. I’ve been pregnant, nursing, or both since February of 2003. But, maybe that, in and of itself, warrants a red dress anyway. Thank you!

    Lissie recently posted Get Out of My Kitchen!.

  541. I would love to take part in this and bring it to the school where I teach. So many girls are suffering from the self-doubt, self-awfulness. I would love for an opportunity to not only be a role model of yep, I am not perfect but hells-ya I’m beautiful but maybe a way for them to find it within themselves.

  542. Damn right that’s what makes you beautiful! The red dress just gives the beautiful YOU a pretty backdrop. I’d LOVE to rock one of the red dresses and pass it on to celebrate and scream out loud my upcoming 1 year anniversary of eating disorder treatment. I’ve learned to quit hiding behind a blanket of anxiety, OCD and disordered eating and to let myself be free for all to enjoy. And if they don’t. Tough. That’s their prob now.

    HungryMac recently posted Faster and further....but not too far.....

  543. Jenny, your photographs are beautiful – YOU are beautiful – and your spirit shines through them. I’m hoping there will be a red dress available for me in May. When I learned that I needed knee surgery, I finally decided to have bariatric surgery first, so I could lose a lot of weight and then be able to participate in the rehab needed after the knee replacement. My daughter is getting married in May, and while I would never upstage her by wearing a red dress to her wedding, I’d like to get my chance to wear it before the wedding and feel beautiful for a day. I’ve lost 90 lbs. so far, but I need to lose a lot more, so I have no idea what size I will be by then. I’d love to be able to wear the new dress you bought (the size 14), but I don’t think I’ll make it that far, so the “expandable” XXL might just be the one. I’ll check back in the spring and see if something is available. In the meatime, Jenny, you keep being your “furiously happy” self and spreading the love like you always do.

  544. At first I see these photos and think ‘she be-yoo-ti-ful.’ And then I think I’m chubby and getting older and have laugh lines. But fuggetaboutit! Red dress or not, I can’t do that! It’s obvious you’ve always been hot! There’s photoshop…I’m pretty sure that won’t help.

    You’re a genius. It has to be a RED dress. This is so perfect and right. How do you come up with these things?

    You really have to see the Bette Davis movie ‘Jezebel’ though. That red dress ruined her life.

  545. Last night, my fiance and I were at a crab feed and auction for his parent’s church. We usually go, help bar tend, and stuff ourselves silly with crab. But this time, after all had been said and done and most people were gone, we looked at the auction items that hadn’t sold. That’s when we saw a magical Beatles Yellow Submarine holographic poster that was beautifully framed. At $175, it was impractical and expensive (to us, at least). But it was perfect and lovely and I knew when I saw it that, no matter the price, I absolutely had to have it. So we bought it. And I giddily signed the credit card slip and packed it into the future in-laws car, where my fiance and I held onto it grinning like idiots as we rode home in the backseat.

    Then I woke up this morning and remembered what I just bought. I had a bit of buyer’s remorse because there are so many other things that we need to spend money, things that we’ve been scrimping and saving for so we can afford it. But I walked out into the living room and saw our new poster sitting there and felt that giddy, furiously happy feeling and I remembered the traveling red dress and how sometimes we need to buy something completely impractical just because we want it. I wanted something nice and fun to hang in our living room, something that represented us, something that we would see everyday and smile. And I found it and bought it. Because I totally deserve it.

    So I guess what I want to say is thank you. Thank you for helping so many people realize that they are indeed beautiful and lovely and worth a bit of extravagance. You have helped create so much magic and happiness in the lives of others.

    Lisa recently posted The Ongoing Saga of Atticus Finch...who may or may not be a zombie.

  546. Oh my you are beautiful! I would love to wear this dress! its the right size and everything, Though I wish I had your boobs!!! I never win anything but i hope i can be the next person to wear this hot dress!

    Kim recently posted things Dowager Countesses Say (Downton Abbey).

  547. smokin’ hot jenny
    a helluva sense of humour, a wickedly smart mind, and a gorgeous body. i hope you (and all your readers) remember all the many many many boxes you tick

  548. I just wanted to tell you that you are a truly inspiring woman and I am so happy to have come across this site. I just started my own blog (It’s only about 2 weeks old) but you are proof that small acts can become big impacts and one person can touch the lives of many. I can’t wait to send out my red prom dress from back in high school. It’s a 14 I’m sure some girl somewhere would love it even if it is a few years old! Keep up the good work, and I can’t wait to read your book!

    Amber recently posted BE STRONGER THAN YOUR EXCUSES.

  549. Jenny,
    This post made me smile on the inside and cry a little on the outside. I am also looking down the road at 40 (this November) and have a considerable 30 or so pounds to lose. I had a plan. A really good one!

    I joined a gym in December and was going faithfully until one day I got an excruciating pain in my knee. (It may or may not have been from the evil devil machine that I had just learned to use) Now, instead of exercising during the month of January, I have been propped up with my knee awaiting surgery. I could really use that dress right about now.

  550. I love what you’re doing with the traveling red dress. I think it’s amazing and inspiring and life changing. It’s nice to read/ see that in the place I am right now. I’m struggling with infertility and accepting the fact that I am not going to have the big family I always dreamed of. My husband and I have one beautiful little boy through IVF and I keep reminding myself of the quote by Epicurus. “Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.” We are blessed and it is enough, but you can’t help what your heart sometimes longs for.

    Becky recently posted Contentment.

  551. Dear Jenny,
    My traveling red dress won’t be needed until June. If I can call dibs this early it would be great! A little about me. I did something very bad a few years back. It was something I thought I would never come back from. It destroyed my reputation and self-esteem. I’ve spent the last four years hiding from the world, both literally and figuratively. But something crossed my path that spoke to my heart and made me face my fear. To become involved with this wonderful non profit group, I had to tell them what I’d done. I knew there was a very good possibility that they would pass on my offer to help. Instead, they welcomed me. They saw that I was more than my past. I would love to do a photo shoot at their inaugural event this summer. The traveling red dress would be my super hero costume, with mask and golden lasso (or power ring or something equally fun).
    I would love to hear what you think,
    Beth

  552. You are gorgeous, end of story.

  553. What an inspiration you are!! You should never feel self-conscious. You are Gorgeous. And if Victor didn’t want to rip that dress to shreds (in a good way *wink*) after seeing these pics, there’s something wrong with him :) Cheers.

    Gracii recently posted Hiatus.

  554. I would love a red dress, but I don’t have anything coming up until July when my Goddaughter has her Sweet 16.

  555. Oh boy, its beautiful and inspiring!
    I’m celebrating the fact that I’m strong, despite the tears that flow. My daughter is in and out of the hospital, and this past Friday something new and unexpected happened. I was unprepared and scared shitless. I have cried for the past 2 days. When asked why, I can’t explain. Despite the fact that she is home right now, I know that surgery is ahead of her. But the tears are more about the fact that I couldn’t control the unexpected. I couldn’t wrap myself around the situation and take charge. I felt weak, and insufficient and dismayed. I have been angry with myself for two days, about my inability to deal with those emotions.
    But the truth is, I’m strong when I have to be! And if crying now is what I need to do, so be it! At the MOMENT… I held my shit together! In the eyes of the people in that E.R. I was super mom! In the eyes of my child, I am always comfort and love. So, I’m going to celebrate my strength. Just once. I’ll own it.

  556. You look amazing ! I would love pictures of me that looked that great. Be proud, very proud !

  557. i would wear the crap out of that red dress because my life has been a bit of a shit-show recently…last month a loved one got a scary medical diagnosis just before christmas. festive! on new year’s day i broke my leg in 3 places while nursing an epic hangover. happy new year! surgery, a metal plate and 7 screws later, i got to “celebrate” my 45th fucking birthday january 16th with dilaudid (!) and a medical shower bench. jealous yet? my husband and my oldest son have adhd and now we suspect that our youngest son has it too.
    calgon…take me away! i need that fucking red dress godamnit!

  558. I love these pictures. You are so strikingly amazingly beautiful. I wish just once in my life I would feel that beautiful. Even on my wedding day I felt like just plain old me playing dress up.

    Stacey recently posted Tomboy.

  559. 565
    Heather Little

    After spending 8 years of being raped and sodomized by an uncle, and 20 years of silence, I am celebrating the courage it took to finally put him behind bars. The last 2 years, there were trials, both literally and figuratively. I lost my job, and my marriage. I was disowned by family for opening my mouth and saying things no one wanted to hear. And I lost myself. But several days ago, while getting ready in the morning, and with a mouthful of toothpaste..I caught a quick glimpse of myself in the mirror. I stared at the girl looking back, and thought, “Who ARE you….?” She seemed familiar..older than I feel perhaps, and a slightly more worn expression..but the blue in the eyes was recognizable. Scar on the nose, and freckle over the heart confirmed it. I gave her a tiny smile (ok and a high five) and off I went to start my day. But I couldn’t stop thinking about her. So after several days, and a few serious heart to hearts with said girl in said mirror (cue Michael Jackson song..) these are my resolutions. To laugh more than I cry. To be proud of myself, instead of seeking approval from others. To live my life with grace, humility, love and compassion. The last two years have been about courage. This year is about hope. While I don’t know what my future holds, I’m excited to see where it leads. Because I’ve realized, that girl in the mirror..? She is the strongest she’s ever been. And I have to say, I’m kinda proud of her:) So yes, I would love to put on a red dress, and feel beautiful in my body. Then take a picture and mail it to Inmate #110127 with a note that says, “Knock, knock motherfucker. You may have raped me, but you’ll never break me.”
    *insert “TOWANDA!!!” war cry” :)

  560. You are beautiful! I don’t see 20 pounds overweight or boobs that are too big, I see a red dress on a stunning woman! You make the dress!

  561. You truly are beautiful.

  562. You look absolutely gorgeous in this dress. I have always wanted a bright red ball gown of my own. Ever since the song the lady in red,when I was a teenager. It sit in my room, trying to survive my teen years ( an alcoholic abusive father and a enabling mother) and the only thing I wore for a couple years was black. It felt like ti matched the color of my life. Soon that black depression, parlayed into a spiral into eating disorders and a raging case of body dysmorphic disorder that never left. I over came the eating disorders, just in time to be diagnosed with bi-polar 1. I’ve spent a good portion of my 39 years feeling broken. I’ve recently went on a mission to leave the brokeness behind me. It will always be a part of mine but I won’t let it define me or restrict me. I’ve started by outing my diagnosis on my blog.
    It was the hardest post that I have ever published. I was so afraid that I would be reduced to nothing but a diagnosis. I’ve also been blogging openly about my surviving my eating disorders. I want to do anything I can to stop it from happening to even one more girl. My latest attempt at moving thorough my murky black, I cut off all of my hair after a lifetime of being defined by it and then 3 days later, I FINALLY had the balls to face my biggest fear…I told the world my weight ( http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/weight-loss-for-mommies/) proof that I truly am crazy:)LOL. I published the numbers and for a person who has been defining herself by a number since puberty, that may have been harder than even revealing my diagnosis.
    I feel like I have earned a red dress. I feel like I am moving towards feeling more beautiful than I have ever felt. Like a weight has been lifted off of my heart. I would love to get that red dress and have a photo shoot. I finally feel like I am worthy of being the lady in red.

    Truthful Mommy recently posted Embracing Motherhood in the Quiet Moments.

  563. You are such a fantastic woman, I can’t even tell you. What I *can* say is that I love your lips! They are so expressive – a little sad, a little cheeky. You’re the most human person on the internet. Keep being rad.

  564. p.s. i forgot to mention that my husband’s workplace shut-down unexpectedly last week so we are unemployed! plus, the red dress would match my “crutcheze” crutch pads perfectly!

    toodles!

    lisa doucette recently posted Happy Birthday Kevin.

  565. Wow! You look beautiful!!! You rocked that dress! I hope you are hanging that gallery of photos up in your house with pride, because you are beautiful!!!

    Kristi recently posted Be Yourself.

  566. Wow, you are so beautiful! Jealous!

  567. Beautiful. Simple. Lovely. Simply lovely and beautiful.

    I bow deeply to the Goddess within you…and everyone (and those who haven’t yet) who responded.

    (Mine is a purple velvet gown…I’m gonna have a photo shoot at a Goddess farm cuz I’m totally inspired.)

    To infinity and beyond…by way of FABULOUS dresses.

    Prevail~Tattoo Girl (sending Magick, LIght, and blessings flowing strongly your way)

    Tattoo Girl recently posted Only Women Walk Down the Stone Steps.

  568. 574
    @DJ_McInberger

    I think I have it better than some and worse than others. I used to be bigger and now I’m not. We finally have true friends but they can’t help us solve our problems. I have no idea how my husband and I can give out so much advice and be so broken ourselves. We deal with the loss of our oldest daughter (many blame on me because I was driving when it happened), our special needs son, and our youngest girl who is only 7 and everything about what is right with the world when sometimes, I can’t even bring myself to stop crying long enough to go pee without the children seeing me in that state. You inspire me so much that I’m constantly terrified that I’ll completely offend you unknowingly. Maybe I need to get me a red dress photo shoot. That way instead of just making it, I’ll excel and revel in my perfect imperfection. We, here at The White House(yes that’s our surname) love you. We curl up with a nice fire and a couple chapters out of your life on cold winters nights. Thank you. For everything.

  569. A single mom of two children on the autism spectrum working 3 different jobs trying to make ends meet. (I was a teacher but was laid-off last year) I could use some red in my life! You look beautiful!!

  570. You are absolutely STUNNING. Not only on the outside, but on the inside as well. The Traveling Red Dress always brings tears to my eyes. You’re daughter is so lucky to have such a wonderful mom and woman in her life. :]

    Anya recently posted My Life.

  571. You rock, Jenny!!! I know I should have a reason to wear a red dress and be awesome, but I can’t think of anything right now. However, I TOTALLY love that you have started this for all the women who need to celebrate or whatever!! Maybe once I stop being afraid to prepare for submission any one of the novels I have collecting dust, I will celebrate with a red dress. :-)

  572. Long time reader and never posted.. BUT you are truly an inspiration. Before I even saw the pictures of your beautiful photo shoot I was getting goose bumps reading your description. The pictures are gorgeous, as you are, but your sentiment is all too real and even more lovely. Thank you for doing the good work you do.

  573. Jenny,

    I’ve read your blog for ages and never posted. You are one of the strongest, most fearless (even if you don’t realize it), beautiful women I have ever encountered, and I don’t even “know” you! Aside from your (quite obvious) physical beauty… Those pictures are AMAZING… Your brain is where it’s at. I find you truly inspiring, from one over-thinking, anxiety ridden, overweight, lovable woman to another, I applaud you!

    HBarefoot recently posted 25 Homemade gifts un.

  574. This is my favorite blog for so many reasons. This post, and all related red-dress posts, are one of them. I’d love to participate, should the dress be near Fort Worth, TX. I would love to surprise my best friend with its’ arrival. We will do shoots of each other and wear the hell outta that dress!

  575. You are so beautiful. I love the photos. I struggled with some terrible anxiety and panic attacks this summer. I couldn’t eat, breathe, or leave my house. It was all very new and scary to me. I spent time in two hospitals and one rehab center. I felt all alone. Thankfully, I have amazing parents, a great boss, super friends, and a good doctor. I finally found the right combination of medications. So, while I struggled terribly for a few months, I am now celebrating. I am back in my PhD program, back to work, back to being me. And celebrating every step in my journey. Thanks for sharing your stories with us. You are an inspiration.

    L-Kat recently posted Birthday recap: All my pets are alive, b-day love is great, Fargo friends are sweet, and my dog is Asian.

  576. First, you are gorgeous and an inspiration. In the last year my husband was diagnosed with a chronic illness that has no cure and will most likely take him from me and our daughters in the next decade; he’s 38. I work like hell to be his rock, keep our family moving forward, be a role model for our daughters and not let the fear take over. I struggle with depression and anxiety every day and am losing myself to alcohol. I have never said these words out loud to anyone. I could use a red dress day.

  577. The annual ALS “Fire and Ice Gala” is coming up. Red is the color for ALS, better known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, so many people wear red dresses. And YOUR dress reminds me of this!

    The background: when I was 34, my husband was diagnosed with ALS. Two of my same-aged friends’ husbands were also diagnosed with the same awful disease. 50% of ALS patients die within 2 two years, 90% die within 5 years. It’s a slow, awful death after a disease that robs a person of his ability to walk, talk, eat, and eventually breathe. It’s been over 5 years since my husband died, nearly 5 years for one of my friends, and about 2 for the other friend. We are survivors. We keep on going when life gets hard because we can, and so many people – our three husbands especially – lost that chance. And we will wear red.

  578. Yeah, I’m needing the red. I need to find that thing I keep denying myself and just do it. I’m over 40, heavier than I’ve been in my life – though, like you, no one else would think I’m particularly overweight. I hope you catch one of these photos out of the corner of your eye and think “wow! so pretty!” and then realize, belatedly, that it’s you. The people posting here aren’t telling you that you look lovely because they are trying to make you feel better – they are telling you that you are lovely because they hope you can see yourself the way they do.

  579. You are beautiful. Not a pound overweight. Your boobs are perfect, your arms are perfect. If it’s okay with you, I’d like to paint how beautiful you are in that dress.

  580. I love this! I got my red dress for Christmas in the form of bright red Hunter Wellington Rain Boots. I love them but they stayed in my closet for over a month because I felt too shy to wear something so bright. I wore them the other week when it rained and I felt so much lighter and happy…every time I looked at them I smiled more. Totally helped that people were loving on them all day!

    Hope everyone finds their dress!

  581. 587
    Wirechoirconvert

    You. Are. Stunning. Really. And an inspiration to many, as proven by the comments above. I could never be this “me” in a picture, so I am slightly envious of that (hate having my picture taken with a white-hot hate). I also have good news from “40-land” to share with you…it’s great! I finally feel comfortable in who I am, feel strong from surviving many trials and tribulations, and more relaxed/less anxious than I was when I was younger. I hope that will be true for you as well!

    But, back to my original sentiment- you look AMAZING!!! Thank you for sharing your pictures and the traveling red dress with all of us!

  582. Jenny, you are amazing, and that dress is amazing, and you made me cry! I also noticed your comment about chemo drugs and RA, because my dad just started that drug for probably having arthritis, and is so terrified of it! So I looked back at your old posts, and I am so glad he hasn’t had to take as much as you did! You said you “survived” it, so does that mean you no longer have to take it? I hope that means it helped!

    (The methotrexate helped but what really helped was getting on injectables. They’re pricey, but worth it. ~Jenny)

  583. You look utterly devastatingly divinely gorgeous.

    I’m currently browsing through this company’s dresses. Pondering.

    Dangerous Lilly recently posted ILU.

  584. Same issues, same self-consciousness- overcoming it by getting on a stage in front of hundreds of people at the end of February in garters and stockings and dancing my ass off in our local performance of Cabaret- having to endure fittings when the outfits fit all the other girls except for me is no fun, but I’m grinning and bearing it.

    Amber Mackey recently posted Can you, can you do the can-can….

  585. Daaaaaaamn girl! lookin hot!

    Lindsay recently posted Cleanin out my closets.

  586. I’ve been a long time follower, but never posted … but I love this post so much that I made an exception to my lurking only tendency. Thank you for including the link where we can find that dress. Lately I’ve been feeling decidedly unsexy, and a dress like that would make anyone feel a little extra zip in her step. You look gorgeous in those photos!

    Emily recently posted Why working in a dorm is kind of the same thing as having children only you can't touch them because you could get fired..

  587. The pictures are really amazing! You look absolutely fab! The idea of the traveling red dress is really a great one!

    Kirstie recently posted Cycle of Anger.

  588. I’ve been reading your posts to my husband for a while. He saw the pictures today (first time I’ve showed him anything other than Beyonce), and his words? “She’s a good lookin’ gal!” No, he’s not 80. Yes, he’s serious. And, this is an utter, honest, and amazing compliment from him. :) Congrats – I don’t think *I’ve* ever gotten that kind of compliment. Bitch. (Said with all the love in my heart….) :)

    Michelle recently posted So Much Pain.

  589. Thank you for your honesty and inspiration. You look beautiful! I’m in search of my red dress

  590. As someone who is also 20 pounds overweight and has boobs that are too big, I completely understand that feeling of insecurity. My red dress is a new bikini. I’m going on vacation to the Caribbean with my husband in 2 months, and he really, really wants me to wear a bikini, which i haven’t done since high school. I REALLY want to do it, but I am so terrified, and I feel silly for feeling so terrified. I’m desperately trying to lose weight, but I tell myself that I’m going to get a bikini, even if I don’t get to my goal weight by then. He loves me the way that I am, and it shouldn’t matter what random strangers think of my fat ass, right? I hope when the time comes, I can garner the courage to do so.
    And by the way, you are GORGEOUS in that red dress! (and your boobs look awesome in it too!)

  591. You look like a valentine! I LOVE it!

  592. I think your boobs look awesome–and not in a weird perv-y way.

    I’ve been reading about the red dresses, and thinking that it’s amazing, what your doing out in the world, for gals who have survived some major things. I never consider myself one of those gals, because I’ve survived, and then life goes on–and then the living overshadows the surviving. Which is how it should be, I think.

    I know there are gals out there that need a pick me up, or that are coming out of the trenches. That isn’t me. Seven years ago, I gave birth to premature triplets–and while our son, Caleb, died on the day they were born–the other two lived (against many, many odds) to spill milk on my floors everyday. It doesn’t feel like an accomplishment so much as just an incredible blessing that I get to scream at them to flush the toilet. It’s given me eyes to see the way people struggle and cope and try to survive their fears–sometimes those fears are things like keeping up appearances or not fitting in, and sometimes they are life threatening diseases–but we’re ALL surviving something. But SURVIVING is a big deal, that I sometimes downplay because, it’s just me (and our family), doing this life-thing that everyone else is doing too. But if there’s one thing we girls don’t do enough of, it’s celebrating ourselves. Our lives that drive us crazy–that I PRAYED for the entire 6 months my babies spent in the hospital. This was my dream come true, the fairy tale–7 years later. And if you have a red dress still available, I’d love to wear one and CELEBRATE, and rock the shit out of it.

  593. Absolutely gorgeous! I’m so glad someone else will be rocking that beautiful dress soon.

  594. So I read your blog ALLLL the freakin time but have yet to comment. I just felt it was time. I want to tell you how incredibly beautiful you are. Inside and out…. The pictures are amazing and you look gorgeous in your “little red dress”! :)

  595. I don’t know if you read all the comments, since there are hundreds of them. I just wanted to say that you are beautiful and you are such an inspiration. I feel like I am going down further and further and you have inspired me to get help. Thank you so much! <3

  596. You look amazing! Next time I go to a yard sale or something I am going to keep an eye out for the perfect red dress. I would love to do a session in one. I guess I am a survivor and a fighter. Although is seems silly when people are dealing with things like cancer, but I am trying to put my life together and figure out how to support myself and my daughter now that I am getting divorced. It has been so emotionally draining, but I think I may actually see a light at the end of the tunnel, although I am not quite out of it yet. Maybe I will wear a red ball gown when I sign the final papers :-)

  597. You need a new mirror.
    The one you have is telling fibs.
    You’re utterly gorgeous – that is all.

    Janet NZ recently posted Food for thought.

  598. You look absolutely gorgeous in that dress!

    I’m so in love with the idea of the traveling red dress.I’d ask for one, but I’m not sure I’m even capable of being frivolous anymore.I think it would be wasted on me right now, which is pathetic, I know.

    For the last 10 years, life has been at best stressful and at worst a nightmare. I’m an almost 50 yr. old mom (my birthday isn’t for months, but I promised my sister I’d be 50 with her this year, so yeah I’m pretty much 50.) My 17 yr. old son has Aspergers Syndrome. He’s been bullied to the point that at 10 yrs. old he had a nervous breakdown & now has severe anxiety and depression. He struggles with life, but has taught me everything I know about perseverance & strength. I’ve been a SAHM since he was born, because even now he needs that. I deal with depression & panic attacks daily, some days better than others. Although I struggled with anorexia for years, I’m now 40 lbs. overweight. I haven’t been on a date with my husband in 12 years.

    Someday I’m going to get a tattoo on my shoulder. It’s going to be an angel, but not the pretty girly kind. Mine is going to be an angel who looks like he’s been though a violent battle, on bended knee, sword in hand, looking up as if to say “is that the best you’ve got?” in defiance. And it’s going to be bad ass. And maybe I’ll get my nose pierced. And when my hair finally goes completely white, I’m dying it bubblegum pink.

    In the meantime, I just want to say this – sites like yours are what keep me sane. On days when I can’t breathe, I look at that picture of Beyonce at the door and laugh. Thank you for that.

    Karen recently posted Having a Little Geek Girl Moment.

  599. Your blog is incredibly inspiring! I love the traveling red dress. I’m not writing to get a chance at the red dress, because there are so many others out there who need it more than I do. I went through hell as a child. A non existent father and a physically and emotionally abusive step-father. But, I persevered & survived. And, life is so much better. Life is great. I want to send a message to all those struggling to encourage them to persevere. Survive. And I sincerely hope that your life becomes great.

  600. You look absolutely stunning.

    shawful recently posted To Vacay or Not to Vacay (and most importantly - WHERE?).

  601. 607
    Tania Townsend

    NOM nom nom nom nomalicious…in, like, a totally hetero way…I’m not puttin’ th’hard word on you dear but, NOM!

  602. I’m sure tons and tons of people have already said Me! Me! for this dress, but whoever gets it, once you get pics done, I’d love for you to think of me :) Just lost about 60 pounds, wearing a size 14-16. Going through a divorce, on my second day of dealing with kidney stones, writing my dissertation– kinda easy to feel like the world is out to get me at the moment.

    Love everyone’s stories and rooting for us all to survive!!

  603. I would love a chance at a red dress.

    This last couple years have been hell. I had my daughter nine months out of high-school and her father walked away before she was born. I was young and stupid and hadn’t had the funds to pursue legal custody until recently. He hasn’t seen her in over 2 and a half years but he is fighting tooth and nail and trying to portray me as this horrible, selfish person (I gave up going to the college of my dreams, have been forced to live with my parents and work at a job that just barely lets us survive the month).

    I just found out last week that he has found yet *another* loophole to force the case out another month to month and a half. It has already been a year of his constant insults and belittling (again) despite his uncaring behavior toward his daughter (whom he hasn’t even *asked* to see since this process started in November of 2010).

    Oh and to make it all better? I also just found out that my annual exam (that I had to scrounge pennies and swallow my pride and go to Planned Parenthood to afford) came back bad, again. Which means that I at the ripe age of 24 have to go face a coloposcopy and a litany of other tests to see if I might have cancer.

    So its been one hell of a year and we aren’t even a full month in.

  604. Love the pics– you’re so sassy and sexy! I would love to have a dress make me feel that way. I’m always trying to lose weight, I’m always trying to look better… I wish I could be happy with what I see in the mirror!

    The Lovely One recently posted Even my fingers hurt as I typed this.

  605. I’m not commenting to ask you to send me a red dress.. I’m commenting to say “Thank You” for helping me realize so many of my own red dress moments over the past year and a half. You are my hero– right along with Scarlet O’Hara.

    Katie Allen recently posted What is your red dress? (by:Katie).

  606. Jenny, you are divinely gorgeous, and you ROCK! I now have both metal chicken envy and the desire to wear a freaking red dress EVERYWHERE I go. And I have never worn a red dress. Ever. Just never believed I could pull it off. The are so many reasons I would love to have one for a photo shoot now. The least of which is that I turned 40 at the beginning of this month, and almost had a nervous breakdown. The hubby and I have had a mucky, yucky, cranky and rotten few years, due to a number of factors: the disappearance of steady income at the hands of a back-stabbing business partner who also happened to be my hubby’s BFF; the loss of our home to foreclosure; having to take our kiddos out of private school and away from their friends, so we could move to another area of town with good public schools; having to rely on family for financial help that I feel like we will never be able to repay; and to top it all off an unexpected death in the family a week ago. I NEED my own red dress, and I’m pretty sure the hubby could use one too….lol.
    I should also mention that I have several girlfriends who would most definitely benefit from a gathering to shoot photos and enjoy the magic of a red dress. It would make all of them BEAM from the depths of their soul.
    You are working magic here, woman. Keep it up!!!

    calibamanancy recently posted Bubblegum from Heaven.

  607. You look STUNNING!!!
    and without an ounce of self-conciousness anywhere.
    Beautifully inspiring. I’m so glad you took — and posted — these photos

  608. Dude you look awesome! You’re getting dangerously close to making me enjoy your serious posts as much as your funny ones. I’m not sure whether to be grateful to you for that, or to send you a dead rat via U.S. Mail for making me all sentimental.

    Amy....I think... recently posted Craigslist: A cesspool of crazy..

  609. I have been reading your blog for a while. However, I apparently missed the one about the red dress, so I went back after reading this and read the original one. It made me realize how often I deny myself the things I really want and how much I also want the red dress. I felt changed just after reading. You are such an inspiration, and you look absolutely gorgeous in that dress! Thank you so much for everything, and I can’t wait to keep reading.

    You are a completely beautiful person.

  610. You are totally beautiful. Inside and out.

    P.S. You have very nice feet.

    "Susan Says..." recently posted Half A Woman at Whole Foods.

  611. Outstanding photos. /standing golfclap /inappropriate Wolf-whistle

  612. You did wear the hell out of the dress, Jenny. You looked beautiful.

    Your comment that you feel purposeless really struck a chord for me. I have a 10-year old son who is so self-critical, it is incomprehensible. The tiniest mistakes or an accidental spill or a less than perfect piano practice session can send him into a vicious tail spin where he convinces himself he is a stupid, worthless idiot. He has started hitting himself when he is in one of these states – he said it makes him feel better, but he is unable to vocalize why. I had hoped that his dad and I could intervene by trying to give him guidance on more positive self talk, trying to be less critical. He sees through false praise and it makes him feel worse. He says he can’t stop his thoughts. Yesterday he told me he feels like he is just taking up space. My heart broke. He’s 10! I realize now I should have done it sooner, but I’m getting him into counseling asap. We need a professional’s help to get him to understand how wonderful and valued he is, and that the world – beyond our house and family – is a much richer place with him in it. Thank you for being so open and honest about your battles. I see now that he might be fighting some of the same battles as you. You may be saving his life. I am eternally grateful.

  613. 620
    melanieylang

    No question, Jenny, you *are* beautiful to all of us reading along with your journey <3

  614. Ok, NOW I’ve got my post up for you to see. I hope you enjoy seeing the pics of 3 yrs ago to today as much as I did! It blew my own mind! Red dress…this is a wonderful idea and I have lots of photog friends!

    Krista English recently posted Happy 3rd Birthday to Me! A Transplant Recovery 3-Year Review.

  615. 622
    MoabLynette

    Don’t need anything but you – you’re my “red dress” … so inspiring > someday I’ll write a whole blog post about how you’ve changed my life.. meanwhile, just embrace your aging and don’t regret any facet of not looking like you “used to” — it’s all about today and moving forward — you’re amazing. I. Love. You.

  616. Jenny, I absolutely love your red dress. You are stunning and beautiful, inside and out. It takes a lot of courage to share some of the things you have, and I envy you for that. All of your stories, like the Twilight Premiere and Beyonce, the giant metal chicken (two of my favorites), inspire me to have as much fun as I possibly can for as long as I possibly can. And I simply cannot wait to read your book.

    You. Are. Amazing.

    The Bored Student recently posted I will stop procrastinating.....next week.....

  617. The girl up there, in that red dress is one sexy, sassy and extraordinarily beautiful woman and if we could be but half as much as that, the whole world would be a better place.

    My #travellingreddress are shoes in a variety of colours and shapes and styles and they make me smile. But maybe I need a bit of that red dress up there too.

  618. Thanks for making me cry at work, for all the right reasons. Whatever my scars and extra pounds I am still here to fight another day.
    And I fully agree, Joy is always worth it!

  619. You are an inspiration to me Jenny! You are more the beautiful inside and out. I have no great tail of my simple life. Life it self is a goal for most these days. I’m slowly working through my anxiety issues. I’m pushing myself more and more everyday and that is something I am proud of. Reading your blog was uplifting. I hope I will find that red dress that pulls the true me out of it’s shell. I guess I’m kind of a turtle. I’m moving slow but will get there in time.

    P.S. Love your blog! :O)

  620. Love everything about the red dress. Especially love the way you originally wrote about it. We all need to find “our red dress,” shed our insecurities and live a little.

  621. Love everything about the red dress. Especially love the way you originally wrote about it. We all need to find “our red dress,” shed our insecurities and live a little.

    http://7000words.wordpress.com/2012/01/29/scratch-the-rv-the-hamster/

    Andrea recently posted Scratch the RV & the Hamster.

  622. I TOTALLY understand the insecurities & your conclusions. Thank you so much for not only the story, but the follow up & for sharing the BEAUTIFUL pictures of YOU. YOU are BEAUTIFUL! Don’t EVER let anyone one tell you or convince you otherwise, NOT EVEN YOURSELF. The beauty of your spirit shines through all that you’ve experienced in life & all the wondrous things that are to come. Thank you for helping to spread such a wonderful & inspiring message to others.
    May God’s grace & glory continue to shine on you & through you ALWAYS!

  623. You’re so awesome, Jenny. And your awesomeness inspired me to do something I normally suck at…ask for help. And though I’m not a survivor in the traditional sense of the word, I do consider myself one. A little over two years ago my dear friend took her own life, and I found her. It has cracked the axis of my world. And that bullshit adage “time heals all wounds” is not 100% true. Time scabs them over, but they are still there, and sometimes they start bleeding at really inconvenient and unexpected times.

    I’m just starting to come out of the cocoon I dove into to get away from this, mentally. I’m coming back to the woman I was; happy, confident, full of life. I’m starting to shed the anger and the pain (and the pounds I gained while stuffing all that down). And I think a red dress would be a great way to say goodbye to all this stuff weighing me down and keeping me from my true self. Even if I am not able to share this particular dress, you’ve inspired me to get one of my own. So thank you. And next time you feel that anxiousness, Jenny, reach out and feel all the people that adore you. We’ll get you through it. xo

  624. you are a beautiful woman with a smile that can light up a room. you have a husband and child who love you. you are funny and normal and just fine tyvm.
    don’t forget that even in the dark times.
    i don’t and i’m fabulous too!

  625. 632
    me_mumstheword

    You are a beautiful lady. Your soul is gorgeous and it shines!!

  626. You and your photos are breathtaking! You look so fantastic—I love it and I love what you’re doing for women across the world.

    I don’t deserve a red dress as much as other people here but here’s my story: Like many, I fight against depression on a regular basis. Over the past couple weeks, I have had unexplained insomnia, which only makes it worse. Loneliness is my most constant companion. I had my heart broken a couple years ago by a guy I should be over by now (but I’m not). And now one of my best friends is getting married and has asked me to be a bridesmaid, and I’m having doubts that I can handle it, emotionally (but if I back out, I’m pretty sure I’ll hate myself more). As much as I want to be supportive and loving and happy for her, I am consumed with jealousy and increasing loneliness. I have tried for years to be comfortable in my own skin, but the knowledge that I am going to be the “fat bridesmaid” has turned me back toward hating my body and trying to drop my own extra 20 pounds. In the past few months I’ve finished writing a novel that has been my passion for over four years, and now I’m afraid it will never see the light of day or even be good enough for that. So yeah … that’s me.

    EmSpeaks recently posted Speaking From the Pit.

  627. This is such an amazing idea. I am a survivor of rape and depression. I am, like many others, proof that you can overcome obstacles, and come out ON TOP. Thank you for posting this :)

  628. You look amazing!!

    I am going to visit my parents in florida next week… and I bought a bright red swimsuit and I can’t wait to wear it. I figured, why not red… black is too boring! Wearing such a bright colour really boosts my mood and confidence… which I will need a lot of in this swim suit! I always had an ‘athletic’ figure but recently I gained a lot of weight and have become a curvy girl, so I bought a 1 peice, which might not seem like a huge step but for me it is :) first time in a swim suit, in this ‘new’ body, in years.

  629. Oh my goodness! You are beautiful! How can you not look and the mirror every day and say “man I am pretty!” ? You really are. Love the photos. Glad you have overcome the obstacles so far in your life. Red dress or not, you are totally geautiful.

  630. Jenny – may I call you Jenny? I think you are such an inspiration to people who can get their head’s out of their butts long enough to see that you really have something to say. I too suffer with self harm and have for a few years now. I’m not ashamed of the scars I carry with me every day. They’ve made me who I am today. I still battle with the urge daily, but I’m getting stronger. Reading your story was another confirmation that I’m not the only one that battles with these things. Also, like you, I have very cushiony arms that I’m trying to see as beautiful although I think they just make me look disgusting. While I plan on trying to find a red dress of my own, being able to wear one of yours would mean more to me than you realize as the more I read from you, the more I see that we are kindred spirits.

  631. Absolutely beautiful! Love you so much.

  632. Your boobs are fabulous – I’d totally motorboat you if I was a dude.

    Rebeccah recently posted Y'all Gon' Make Me Lose My Mind...(up in here, up in here).

  633. Stunningly beautiful is what you are. Inside and out.

    LisaAR recently posted Get busy living,          or get busy dying..

  634. 641
    NtYtCrzyCatLdy

    Gorgeous! If Victor didn’t throw you down and ravish you the minute he saw those pictures, well, he’s an idiot…! I hope those pics led to a wonderful evening!

  635. Wow…so many stories of struggles and survival. I wish I could give a red dress to everyone that commented, but I’d probably need to part with every paycheck I’ll receive this year.

    I would love to wear this dress. Or any red dress, for that matter. I know that there are women who need its magic more than I do, but I’d love to be on the list of red dress recipients.

    I used to wear the hell out of everything. I’ve always been a top heavy girl (big boobies are the best!), but I also used to be 50 pounds lighter than I am now. I used to love being the center of attention, wearing things that made people look at me, doing things that were absolutely positively ridiculous, leaving the house as if I were the long lost 6th Spice Girl. And I miss that Me. She was pretty awesome. She painted all the time, found beauty in the most mundane things and went to Wal Mart in her hot pink prom dress at 2 o’clock in the morning. She lived like there was no tomorrow…moving to New York City, becoming a fine art model, making friends with strangers on the street and then running to the nearest karaoke bar to sing with them.

    After countless years of struggles, that girl needs to come back. I miss her so much. I miss my karaoke loving no-longer-stranger who committed suicide in her east village apartment last July. 2 weeks after I got engaged. :*( I miss seeing my family all the time because I wasn’t afraid that they would judge me for who I had become. I miss being able to fit in that hot pink prom dress. I’ve always considered myself a pessimistic idealist- I’d love to fit into that dress again, but I don’t think I ever will. But that doesn’t mean that I can’t wear it in my head. I think the red dress for me is the physical manifestation of everything that I let go of once the anxiety took over my brain. I’m so busy worrying that I’ve forgotten why my friends and family loved me in the first place. I was so concerned with what I thought of myself that it was hard to believe that anyone thought better of me. All those sayings about how it doesn’t matter what other people think of you as long as you love yourself….I felt the opposite. And it’s not Me. It can’t be. I need to take a break from incessantly cleaning my apartment and pick up a paintbrush. I need to make something beautiful so I can see that I’m still capable of doing so. And I’m trying. I’m really trying. I’ve started working out, eating better, leaving my apartment to see friends. I finally graduated college after 7 years of on and off studies. I’m coming to terms with who I am and who I was and trying to find balance. Enough responsibility to actually think I can have a kid in the next few years without totally fucking it up, but enough wacky so that the kid knows that it’s ok to be different. It’s a long journey and it never really ends, but throughout the process we learn so much more about ourselves and our surroundings. No matter how much progress I’ve made, there is always more to come. I’m terrified that planning my wedding is going to bring out the anxiety beast to the extreme but I’m trying to keep it at bay. I would love to wear a red dress to prove to myself that I can be the Old Me. That I still AM the Old Me. I would wear the hell out of this red dress. And I would pin a hundred silver ribbons on it.

  636. 643
    Licia Oligmueller

    your photos are spectacular…you totally rocked that dress!!! you are beautiful…

  637. Thank you so much for sharing these – the red dress always makes me smile. Right now I’m struggling to overcome a food addiction that I’ve had all my life. It has gotten worse in the past 3 years. I am a compulsive overeater and have driven myself to be 65 pounds overweight. I’m only 22 and feeling so disgusting makes me want to eat even more. Food addiction is very difficult to fight. Whereas alcoholics or drug addicts can cage the tiger and never take it out, I’m expected to cage the tiger only sometimes, but take it out three times a day and play with it nicely. Food is all around and is culturally acceptable. I think people laugh at compulsive overeaters and think, “God, have some willpower. Just DON’T eat.” But it’s a disease, a disease that I’m fighting every day. I hope someday to be able to take part in the red dress project – it’s so beautiful.

  638. For me my red dress is a white dress. I already have it, although I’m not sure I can squeeze into it right now without alterations. I finally found the love of my life and my life is good. My health is stable; I have pulmonary hypertension,( it’s being controlled with meds) I have depression (more meds) and my son is adhd (he gets meds too! WHEE) but my son is healthy, energetic, and I have the love and support of a wonderful man and my friends and family. But life has its ups and downs and unfortunately, I haven’t won the lottery and I wasn’t born in the top 1%. I dreamed about a small but special wedding/reception, where I would wear that beautiful white ball gown, satin chucks and a tiara and feel like a princess if only for one day, which has never been me. But with other health issues (my poor fiance’s back injuries) and money being too tight, I’ve finally concluded that it’s just not going to happen. I don’t need the red dress, I see way more here who could use it, but I totally relate to wanting to feel beautiful and special, even if only for one day. I hope every woman here can find a chance to do that.

  639. Jenny! I really REALLY want to take pictures in the DC metro area of girls who get the travelling red dress. Can you let me know how? My email is mamta02@hotmail.com. Thanks!

    Mamta recently posted Today....

  640. 647
    Nina Cooper

    Jenny-I’ve been following your blogs for about 2 months now but became so hooked that I back-tracked and read through the last 2 years of entries! You are so awesome to me and completely gorgeous in that dress! I’m such a creative-wanna-be but am not very good at it (my creativity goes as far as painting my fingernails with white-out instead of nail polish or trying to make a layered cake I saw of Pinterest that ended up being thrown in a tuper-wear bowl and eaten by the dog) but reading your blogs gives me inspiration to just be myself, being happy with myself even when I hate myself and that may actually end up being enough after all.
    Currently I am working full-time, going to school full-time, trying to be a good mother and step-mother and newly-wed wife, Suzy home-maker, a Right-Hand and Left-Hand to my bosses, the perfect and responsible daughter, the social-nonflakey friend and all the while trying to keep my sanity tight enough to not go MIA. I live in the middle of nowhere in the country (South GA) but only want to be at the beach near a big city…and do it because it makes everybody else happy, and I’m okay with that. I’m a wanna-be-photographer with dreams of traveling the world with just me (my husband; who hates traveling), my backpack and my camera. I wear sneakers and holey jeans and my hair is always up in a messy bun because I have to wear a hair net at my job – food manufacturing company. I would love the chance to put on this beautiful red dress and feel like a girl again for a day! I have a friend who can take some pictures and I would definitely like to share them with you and the rest of the world!

  641. You are stunningly beautiful. Don’t ever think less of yourself. Big Hugs to you and all that you do. <3

  642. Thank you. I have just recently discovered your blog. Your original post about the red dress reduced me to tears and made me realize that I have forgotten what my own ‘red dress’ even is. Husband, teenagers, animals, job(s). I have allowed everyone and everything to crowd out who I am and what brings me joy. Time to discover just what that is at this point in my life. Thank you for shining a light.

    Laurie recently posted Marshmallow Surprise.

  643. I have a friend who needs a red dress! She was diagnosed with BC AND colon cancer in December of 2010. She was told if she got through the surgeries for the colon CA, she’d just need radiation to eradicate the BC. Turns out, they were wrong. She has but what her doctors believe is only a few months left here with us. She is the mom to two beautiful girls that are about 3 and 5. She rocks her bald head like she chose the haircut herself. She struggles daily with the knowledge that she will not be with her husband and kids much longer and she needs the reminder of all she is and has already overcome and something for her kids to look back on and remember what a strong woman she is!!

  644. You are beautiful and wonderful and make me realize that it’s okay to be myself. You are more than a witty writer and a pretty face, you’re an inspiration, and I thank you!

  645. My bestfriends momma, Alice, was diagnosed with breast cancer 5 years ago. She underwent treatment and kicked cancers ass into remission. Here we are 4.5 years into remission and the cancer is back. At this point it is in her brain, lungs, liver, spine and bones. It is terminal. Alice is the strongest, sweetest, most beautiful person I know. She is fighting with everything she has and doing it with grace and beauty. Her body is getting weaker by the day and she is starting to think that she is weak. I want her to have the chance to don a red dress and see how strong she still is and how breathtakingly beautiful she is. I know her daughters would cherish the photos for years to come. Her daughter is a photographer so I know we can line that end of it up. I would owe you from now until forever if you could help with the dress part. Thanks. Truly.

  646. 654
    LInda Perez

    You look absolutely beautiful, Jen. I am so impressed by your your confidence in the pics even though I know you have all the million self-doubts running through your head, that I, too, have. Only difference is, I am still not brave enough to wear a dress like this or do a photo shoot. I have spent my life on a diet and for the first time in my life I am at a reasonable goal weight, thanks to becoming a Zumba instructor, and yet, all I can still see are my faults. I hope to some day, just say “fuck it” and go for it the way you have because you are incredible gorgeous in this photo shoot. =)

  647. Hubba Hubba. You look great woman!

    Megan recently posted The Best Gas Station Ever.

  648. Wow! What an amazing set of photos of you. I hope that you are proud of all you have accomplished and what the lines say about your strength. Truly beautiful people can be hard to find these days but you seem to be the leader of them. So I follow you and take in all the wonderful that it The Bloggess ;)

  649. You. Are. Gorgeous. Inside and out – keep rocking red dresses and inspiring the rest of us to do the same :) #gratefulforyou

  650. You know how there are certain things in your life that seem to always know what you need? I don’t know – maybe if your religious and when you go to church, it seems like the sermon was meant for you. or your having a shit day but your best friend says just the right thing. or whatever may be that thing in your life that has that crazy sort of symbiotic relationship with you?

    That is what your blog does for me. After a shit weekend of feeling like the ugliest monster on the planet (I’d look better as an Ood) you bring the red dress out. I needed to read this. I needed to see what this dress means to people.

    As pathetic as it sounds, Jenny, I need you and your blog. You say just the right thing for the crazy-ness in my life like one telepathic mothafucka!
    Don’t ever leave us, your minions, behind. I am begging you.
    Love

    danielle recently posted EASIEST DESSERT *EVER*: Peanut butter and chocolate crescent rolls..

  651. Hi Jen! I’m a more recent follower so had to go back and read the older posts about the red dress. You rocked both dresses and inspired me to do something like this for my mom. She’s having a mastectomy tomorrow because of breast cancer. She’s not going to be able to get the reconstructive surgery for a while (if ever) and I want to do something to make her feel beautiful again. Thank you so very much for this post!!!

  652. You look beautiful! Love the eye make-up!

  653. My sister and I are so ready for this. She is only 34, and has been battling cancer after cancer since January 2010. She has continued to work full time with at-risk kids, and even managed a promotion. Instead of siniking into shame during the radiation and chemo, she clipped her hair to her skull in a white blonde pixie and rocked it. She tried to hide it at first, because she wanted no sympathy and didn’t want to seem weak. Since then, she has gotten to a point where she is pretty much giving cancer the finger, and she always has the last word in an argument with “Yeah, well I have cancer.” She’s gorgeous and funny and mean and tender hearted and I love her without reservation. Her spirit defies explanation. I am her rounder, quieter, older sister. I have managed to work myself into a depression so deep that my head aches, my bones ache, and it takes everything I’ve got not to give up. But I’ve got a lot. :) I am digging deep for me, for her, for my man, for my kid, and for everybody out there who suffers and wonders if they’ll survive. So, if we get to use this dress, we’ll get another to go with it, send you our pics, and pass ‘em on. Monday is looking up.

    P.S. I don’t know you, but I’m proud of you.

  654. You look beautiful, Jen. You are truly an inspiration.

  655. You are an inspiration to us all. You are. I can’t explain how happy I am that not only do you get the good fortune to dress in these beautiful gowns and feel damn good about yourself but you inspire others to do it for themselves and to help others do the same. You’re a great, shining beacon of love and hope and seriously, thank you.

    I’d love to do something with this, maybe not a red ball gown but I would adore the opportunity to get dressed up in an over the top, crazy, gorgeous outfit with my hair and face made beautiful so that I can feel like the sensational person I am. I want to pour my tiny, breastless body into something that will make me feel like a strong, empowered woman (with boobs, if miracles can be done). I would love to stand in front of a woman, her head filled with awe over the beauty that she is, and take photographs of the moment when she felt her strongest so that she can look back at them any time she wants and remember how powerful she really is. To be a part of something so spectacular would truly be an honour. So if there’s anybody out there in the UK who wants to get together, combine dress-up boxes and play pretend then get in touch. :)

    Mutant Girl Robyn recently posted Inside the Mind of a Mutant.

  656. I am way older than most of y’all–I will retire in July and when I am 62. I am bat shit crazy too but have hid it well for a REALLY.LONG.TIME. I have been a single mom and worked, well, for fucking EVER. I think worried-about-the-future crazy older gals need red dresses too. Our arms sag and our bellies stick out and we have gray hair all over the damn place, and we become invisible to EVERYONE.
    FUCK THAT.
    I bet a goddamn RED ballgown worn to the supermarket would fix that on a New York second.
    You look amazing Jenny and always will. Even at 62.
    xoxoxox

  657. I am 9 months preggo with baby #3, and I’ve come to accept that NO, not all women look like those skinny witches who walk around with basketballs under their shirts. And yes, it is okay to be a squishy armed, onepiece swimsuit wearing mama, because I gave birth. 3 Times…and my kids, they’re aren’t perfect. But they ARE amazing, and they are mine, from me.
    I would wear that red ballgown surrounded by kids and remember that Motherhood…and surviving it daily to get up and do it all over again?!?…that’s pretty damn BAD ASS.

  658. I think that you are amazing and you look gorgeous.

  659. This sounds cathartic.

    I’m considering starting a “Traveling Red Trousers” thing so us guys can get in on the action.

    moooooog35 recently posted I'm in love with Fox News Anchor Gene Lavanchy and I don't care if the whole world knows it.

  660. –>You look beautiful. I love the top row, center picture the most. We all need to wear a red dress, whatever it is, at some point in our lives.

    I keep forcing myself to get in front of the camera because I’m never going to look any younger. I do it for myself but for my son to look back on pictures and see me HAPPY in them WITH him and my husband.

    WebSavvyMom recently posted Catching Up on Things.

  661. i am a size 20 and weight about 255 at 5’7″. i think i need to get on the list for this red dress. i know i need to get on the list for this red dress.

  662. also, you are stunning

  663. and fuck me twice on sunday, i was just comment 666. dammit!

  664. I’m working on my third year of infertility right now and just blogged about my furbabies, PIF (pregnant infertile) survivor’s guilt and cameltoe. I’m 5’10”, 195 lbs and look great in red. Bring on the red dresses.

  665. You are stunning.

  666. Jen, you are so beautiful. Thank you for ordering the dress in a larger size and saying that being that size is still beautiful and ok. I’m the upper end of that range – probably just a bit too upper end. I don’t think there is a red dress for me. But I’m so glad to see a beautiful woman like you wearing it and owning it. I’ll live my red dress dreams through you. :)

  667. Hi, Bloggess. My mother, 65, was just diagnosed with ovarian cancer and will be going through her treatment soon, which will include major surgery and six months of crippling chemo.
    She has already survived breast cancer – when she was 40 (and I was 15), she had nearly a year of chemo – after insisting on it in spite of the doctors telling her they’d rather “save the chemotherapy for when it comes back.” My mom chose not to let it come back (and it never did.) When it was over, she had the doctors remove both breasts as a precaution, even though it was only in one. Then she had them reconstruct her breasts – nearly three cup sizes bigger. The women in our family aren’t exactly stacked, but now mom has a rack to rival Pam Anderson’s (and yours!). She figured that if she was going to do it, she might as well Do It. Goodbye A-cup, hello Voluptuous.
    Her chances of surviving this turn with ovarian are much lower than her chances were at breast cancer, but my mom takes trips to Mardi Gras with her friends and plays golf at midnight. If there were ever a fighter among us, she is it.
    If anyone deserves a red dress, it’s her. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to ask for it :) This is an awesome project.

  668. Jenny, you’re beautiful. I’m definitely looking to celebrate before too awful long myself. I’ve gotten my social anxiety disorder under some kind of control and I’m on the verge of crossing the 200 pound mark in the right direction this time. I lost 55 pounds last year and I feel better and healthier than I have in a decade at least (still 50 more to go, but I refuse to judge my progress harshly or get impatient because I’m 32 and I’ve learned some lessons along the way about my body issues). I have the best boyfriend I could ever imagine, and for the first time, my life isn’t easy but I’m still really enjoying it. Truth be told, I have always wanted a great red dress, and maybe I’ll invest in this one once I hit my intermediate goal weight (under 200), because this kind of thing is worth celebrating every day and not just once some number is finally reached.

    I learn so much from you every post–thanks so much for your wit and humor and grace and awesomeness. You’re one of my biggest heroes.

  669. You are beautiful on the inside and out, and although I don’t take compliments very well myself trust me when I say the world is a little brighter for having people like you (and all of the red dress wearers) in it.

  670. I’ve been working on a family self portrait project for over a year now. Most of my art revolves around family, about the ordinary or what I call “domestic bliss”. The beauty of the little things. I would love to have a red dress for one of the photo shoots. I’m probably a 10 (small tits. big ass, which I think your dress doesn’t care much about). also put myself up for shooting someone in the brooklyn area. you can see my last post to see my style :-)

    angelica recently posted family self portrait January 2012.

  671. Pretty sure this is going to get lost in a sea of comments, but I felt compelled…. You, my dear, are absolutely beautiful. I’m sorry that you needed this dress to be reminded of that, but thrilled that you found a moment of forgotten joy. You rock. You made that dress happy.

    Tammy recently posted Preschool Line Vigilante.

  672. Wow! Beautiful dress! And beautiful you! Love it.

    Motherhood on the Rocks recently posted SANITY SAVERS: FINDING THE 25TH HOUR.

  673. Going to be crass – but whatever.
    FUCKING HOT MAMMA!
    Your boobs look AMAZING. People pay lots of money for those kinds of boobs. Hold them out and be proud.
    Lots of caps because I am emphatic about this. HOT PICS.

    You are very beautiful and this should teach us all that the supposed 20 pounds we are battling, so don’t matter. If you are that down on yourself and ALL the rest of us think you are incredibly beautiful, then that should say to us when we are down on ourselves that someone finds us incredibly beautiful. Your message is twofold here – be kind and pay it forward someone could us the pick me up and the courage to live life with your “red dress” and know that someone finds you beautiful.

    Not so crass….
    You are an incredible woman. FUCKING incredible.

  674. 682
    stripedkelpie

    You look great. And not “for your age” or any crap like that. My “thing” is anxiety around people, which is problem because I also really want to photograph people. And not just my relatives.

  675. I’ll admit I could use a red dress about now. I’ve lived in Fairbanks, Alaska for 5 years, and I feel like I don’t belong, that I could never get used to it. It has been right around -40 for almost two weeks. I think it is about to break, but some defiance against this ridiculous weather would be right on order. After reading about the red dress, I went and got my nails done. ‘Cause I didn’t really need to, but it was fun and completely out of character to spend money on something so.. well, superficial. I love my fake nails.

    I have had a few years full of loss, illnesses, and many joys – I feel most lucky to have wonderful friends in this world, and people who make me laugh and smile and show so much kindness.

  676. I am in LOVE with this. I am in love with the idea (did something similar with an old piece of jewelry), and the sheer joy it inspires. Please, please, please let me be on this list!!!

    I don’t have anything special I am celebrating or any event or any accomplishment or anything..
    I just want to be part of something bigger than myself and I hope it will remind me of the woman I thought I would become.

    If the red dress were to find it’s way to me –
    I solemnly promise:
    To wear it for no good reason
    To dance
    To laugh
    and to send it along to members of the silent majority who need it..

    We are more than we think we could ever be. Long live the dress.

    Stacey Who recently posted Choosing to make it a good day.

  677. What can I say that hasn’t already been said? You are amazing and an inspiration as a writer and as a person in general.
    Though I am certainly no more (and most likely less) worthy than others requesting a dress, I’d like to throw my hat in the ring.
    My reason for a red dress visit, would be in celebration. I am now 38. In October of 2010 I suffered a couple of gallbladder attacks, that I mistook as heart attacks. That alone convinced me to quit smoking. In January of 2011 I was scheduled to have my gallbladder removed, and I vowed that 2011 would be my year! As soon as I recovered from the surgery I would start working out and lose the 70+ pounds that were holding me back. The surgery came and went and I began a very half-hearted attempt to eat healthier and lose weight. I started eyeing Sport Class (3 hour) Adventure Races as a way to inspire myself to make good choices. My husband and I even registered for one a couple of months in advance to hold our feet to the fire. And then in April of 2011 I had a sinus infection and while I was seeing the Doctor, I asked him to poke at my belly and tell me whether or not the “thing” I thought I had been feeling was just fat or “something.” The something ended up being a cantaloupe sized ovarian cyst. As is often the case they could not determine if it was cancerous or not until the actual surgery…so THAT was a fun couple of weeks waiting for that to happen. Thank-your-deity-of choice, it was NOT cancerous. But it still required a cut from bellybutton to pubic area to remove said cyst, along with my uterus and cervix…and then a week of extreme unpleasantness and subsequent recovery I would not wish on anyone else. And that is when, like a lot of other addicts, I hit my proverbial rock bottom. Granted, barring a couple of brief forays into healthier ranges (diets, not lifestyle changes), I’ve been some degree of overweight my entire adult life. But, and here’s the big BUT (pun intended) I still always felt strong. And capable. I’m fairly tall for a woman, so an Amazon if you will. But between my age, the surgery, the weight….I was not who I thought I was anymore. It was no longer about jean size, or aesthetics. I’d see a Nike commercial or some such image and THAT is what I got green with envy over. I wanted to be strong, I wanted to be an athlete. To have my body work for ME.
    So I came to terms with my food addiction, and started using Weight Watchers online to keep track of my food intake. Which I realize at this juncture is something that I will always have to do to be successful. And I’m ok with that. I also set my sights on Adventure Racing again. Using the races as a way to keep me motivated. I’ve committed to a 1/2 hour minimum of either mountain biking or jogging, 6 days a week.
    As a result, since the surgery on May 9th, I have lost 55 lbs. I have always been one who only ran when chased, and now I can jog a 5K. My husband and I have done 3 sport class adventure races and a Warrior Dash and, quite frankly, I could not be prouder of my performance at each. I’ve still got more weight to lose, and my athletic endurance still has plenty of room for improvement. But I’m getting stronger everyday and a photo session with one of the Red Dresses would be a great way to celebrate my continuing journey towards health and fitness.

    Patti Fuchs recently posted 12/23/11 - Sleeping With Heavy, Smelly Things.

  678. You look lovely, lady. Women with curves are beautiful. And it’s true what an earlier comment mentioned: people pay money to get boobs like those! The same is true for asses, which is what I tell myself whenever I look in the mirror and want to retch.

    I would love to try on the dress just once and then send it on. The dress for me is a celebration of re-becoming myself. I spent so many years in a pit of despair with mental illness, abusive relationships, job loss, and so forth that when I finally got the strength to crawl out, it took a long time before I could really get a handle on remembering who I actually was. I remember a little girl who never used to care what people thought, who always raised her hand first, and wore whatever the fuck she wanted, no matter how goofy or cracktastic it might have looked. A picture of me in a completely fabulous red ball gown that Little Me would’ve adored would go a long way. I still have a lot of dress-up clothes, but I don’t generally wear them out and about, and I’ve never been brave enough to wear a red strapless dress. Maybe one day.

    Taryn recently posted I actually feel better today!.

  679. Thanks for the reminder. And 40 is a blast. Well not 40 which made me drink way too much red wine and eat too many chocolate, but after that it ROCKS. You get to give even less of a shit about stupid things.

    Kat recently posted Super powers aren’t just for men in rubber suits and stretchy tights.

  680. Aw, Jenny… You are now and always have been one of the most beautiful women I know. You know, if a person can be known without ever having been met. Because when I see you, I can see past the skin and the pain and the fear and see YOU. The red dress helps YOU see you too!

    Sayre recently posted First Monday Challenge for February 6th.

  681. I have read through all the comments and looked at the pictures over and over and like many of the women posted, I’m near tears. Depression is a theme here with so many women and I too have more than my share. We all have overcome/overcoming such challenges! Such lives and situations and losses that sometimes it’s hard to breath. I’m there now once again in that I’ve been unemployed for over 2 years, the depression is kicking my butt and some days I just want to scream until I find a reason to stop. I have a wonderful man in my life who has never experienced a moment of depression but he tries so very hard to understand and support me. He is my hero and my rock and I thank the Goddess every day for him. Between relying on him for every thing I need, and health issues that have me scared every day and just feel like life is living me, not the other way around, I think a little of the magic of a dress, even if it’s just to wear for a day and then pass on to someone else, knowing the thoughts and wishes and hopes behind it would make such a huge difference in my life. If anyone has one they’d be willing to part with, I would be eternally grateful! Thank you for reading my post here. Be blessed and know you are all in my thoughts and heart.

  682. You are so beautiful, Jenny. All the way through.

    I’ve fought with myself since reading this post about whether to request a red dress. My blog outlines the battle with weight that I’ve been fighting for many, many years. I’m in the last year of my thirties, and I’m staring at hitting forty with the same forty to fifty pounds to lose that I’ve needed to lose since having my daughter.

    So on the one hand, I think “hey, a red dress photo shoot would be awesome for me; maybe it would inspire me to accept my body and just try to take care of it and stop focusing on losing pounds and instead focus on being the strong, healthy woman I know I can be.”

    Then the beast comes out. The beast is the girl inside me who says “If you put on that red dress, you will see what a fatass you are. It won’t look pretty on you because you are getting too old and you are still too fat to wear anything like that. And you can’t get your picture made until you hit the photo-shoot weight loss goal.”

    So I need to tell the beast to go fuck herself. How do I get a red dress?

    Nena recently posted Dinner.

  683. You look lovely and fabulous. I feel like red just makes anyone feel instantly sexy.

  684. Just stunning. On every level.

  685. My red dress is colored cotton bras (DD cup) instead of ugly beige. Makes me feel happy and pretty and girly, even when I have my usual jeans and black t-shirt on.

    Viva la Red Dress.

  686. Ow OW HOT MAMA!

    How the hell is it that you can just stand there and move around a little and get absolutely GORgeous photos?!

    I’m doing to do those poses in front of my partner tonight and see if I can get the same reaction out of him. Although I don’t have a red dress, so I’m just going to have to use my red flannel housecoat instead.

    Christine recently posted Why I Don't Ski (Part I) - Or, When Anticipation leads to Fear, which leads to Snow in my Face.

  687. You look beautiful Jenny!

    Red is my very favorite color! I battle depression and body image every day and it’s wonderful to know that there are people who feel the same but still help others fight their own battles.

    As always you are an inspiration!

  688. You are beautiful, stunning, gorgeous and I love you.

    I need a red dress (well just a vacation). Life has gotten crazy.

  689. I’ve read your site for a long time, but I’ve never commented. You inspire me. The traveling red dress is absolutely beautiful…and you are beautiful in it.

    I’d love the chance to try a travelling dress. Part of the reason that you inspire me is that I’ve struggled with major depression, anxiety, BDD, and self harm. The only reason I don’t look like the victim of a horrific accident is my extremely pale skin. I avoid sun like the plague. A half hour of sunlight and it looks like I have those white tattoos all over my arms. I’ve struggled for more than half my life with an eating disorder. Now, for the first time, I am overweight. It’s taking all of my willpower not to crash. I’m back on medication for the first time in 7 years. I’m hanging on by threads. (Those threads happen to be Prozac and Klonopin.)

    I just started college this semester. I’m holding down a full time job and taking 14 credit hours in an attempt to get my degree and escape this town.

    A red dress would be very symbolic and defiant for me. I was sexually assaulted at the age of fifteen and gave my son up for adoption. A legal battle resulted. It took two years to resolve the issue and ensure that my son would remain with his parents. It was worth it, but now, I’m marked here. I have my son’s paternal family members harassing me. I had to move back into my mother’s home for safety. I am officially “that whore” or “that whore who sold her baby”.

    I’m going to get out of here and make something of myself, but my confidence is mostly bravado. I’d love a red dress. A bright, flamboyant dress that screams “look at me! I have absolutely nothing to be ashamed of!” Go ahead and call me a whore. I know who I am and what I have done.

    If I got a chance at a red dress, my mother is a photographer. I would work that dress and put my photos (I hate photos of myself, hate them) and story up. Out of sheer defiance. No one will break me.

    I hope you know what you do for others, Jenny. You have inspired me to put myself out there. I’m not sure how I will (outside of the possible dress shoot), but I know that others must relate to what I have been through. If you have helped me, surely I can help others.

  690. I don’t think you are “too” anything, but too pretty for your own good. Great photos!

    I’ve got to figure out something for us guys. Maybe some red overalls that we can pass around.

    Jason (The Queer Next Door) recently posted Schubert's Kicking My Ass.

  691. I got my red dress for Christmas a few years ago. It was a toy train. We were broke as anything when I was a kid so I never even asked for one, but I gawked at the toy trains at the hobby store almost every day and I coveted the hell out of them. To me a toy train meant having the security to drop money on something completely useless and unnecessary, just because I wanted it. It meant being warm and well-fed and frivilous. I tear up a little just thinking how much that meant to me. Even though it is boxed up most of the year, I keep the box where I can see it every day and it brings me joy.

  692. Just in the last year and a half, I have lost 54 lbs. (to date). I went from a size (almost) 18 to now (almost) a 6. I never realized how unhappy/depressed/sad I was in my own life until I started my life again (read as divorced from someone who was not the person I thought he was). I’m not much happier with life in general.

    Back in December I was invited to a company Christmas party with a friend. He said it was dressy – so dressy to me was a RED dress. Oh man, I went and found the most perfect red dress and can’t believe how amazing I feel in it. It’s not because of the weight I lost – it’s all about how YOU feel in that dress. I am feeling better and better in my own skin and that red dress makes it even better.

    YOU look amazing in that dress. To have the spunk you have is inspiring to me and this blog really makes me hold my head higher!! ROCK THAT RED DRESS SISTER!!!!!!!

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